Assaulted and racially abused shopkeeper


A man who racially abused and assaulted a shop assistant has had an eight month jail term suspended for three years.

John Pascal Carlin, of Moore Street, Waterside, pleaded guilty to common assault, criminal damage, assaulting and resisting police.

The charges relate to an incident at a Foyle Street shop on May 30.

Derry Magistrates Court heard the 48-year-old shattered a pane of glass in the front door of the shop with his hand. He then knocked over a lottery stand and punched the shop assistant about the face and chest.

Carlin called the injured party a “f****** black b******” and pushed a nut stand towards him.

The court heard the 48-year-old told the shop assistant he was a “f****** black b******” a second time and told him to “go back to your own country”.

It was revealed the injured party sustained a sore hand and leg as a result of the incident but did not seek medical treatment.

The court was also told that over £600 worth of damage was caused to the shop by Carlin.

As the injured party contacted police, Carlin threatened to “come back for you and light you”. When police arrived a short time later the 48-year-old spat at an officer and ripped his shirt during a struggle.

During interview Carlin initially denied the allegation. However, when he was shown CCTV footage of the incident he made full admissions and apologised for his behaviour and the comments made.

Defence counsel Stephen Chapman said “not a lot can be said about this disgraceful behaviour”.

He told the court Carlin has expressed “regret and a degree of embarrassment” about the incident.

Mr Chapman said his client became a street drinker in 1996, however his criminal record is not consistent with someone “drinking on the street on a daily basis”.

The barrister told the court the 48-year-old “makes absolutely no attempt to justify his behaviour” in the shop and is willing to pay compensation.

Suspending the jail term, District Judge Barney McElholm said it was a “scandalous, outrageous attack on an innocent shop keeper with clear racist undertones to it”.

He said he was persuaded not to impose an immediate custodial sentence because Carlin “is in a position to pay substantial compensation” and imposed a total compensation order of £1450.