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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

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Barrow woman given curfew for hurling racist abuse

A BARROW woman who racially abused a shop worker has been given a six-week curfew.

Kerrie Backhouse repeatedly swore at Haydar Orman and told him to “go back to his own country” during a confrontation at Lesh Lane Stores in Barrow.

Furness Magistrates’ Court heard Backhouse, of Rising Side, Barrow, had called in to the shop to buy cigarettes after a drinking session when she aimed the verbal abuse at Mr Orman on January 16.

The court was told that 40-year-old Backhouse had been in the pub with a friend that afternoon and had drunk four pints of lager.

Mrs Lisa Hine, prosecuting, said Backhouse had gone to the shop and had bought some items using her debit card. Mr Orman passed the card back to Backhouse after the transaction was completed and Backhouse left the shop.

Mr Orman then discovered Backhouse had left behind her purse and put it behind the till in case she returned to claim it.

A short time later Backhouse did return and Mr Orman gave her the purse, but Backhouse then claimed her debit card was missing from the purse and accused Mr Orman of stealing it. She swore at Mr Orman and told him to “go back to his own country”.

Mr Orman showed her CCTV footage to prove he had returned her card but Backhouse continued to be abusive.

Mrs Hine said: “Mr Orman responded by telling her that if he did go back to his country he would not be paying taxes to pay for her benefits.”

A customer in the shop at the time supported Mr Orman’s version of events when police were called and Backhouse was arrested.

Backhouse claimed in an interview with police that Mr Orman had called her a “white bitch” and a “snowdrop” and she had only been responding to these remarks.

Miss Karen Templeton, defending, said Backhouse accepted that she had made a racist comment but claimed Mr Orman had also insulted her.

Miss Templeton added: “She accepts that is in no way a justification. She does have some mental health difficulties and does have an alcohol problem but she is dealing with these issues and is getting treatment.”

Backhouse pleaded guilty to a charge of racially aggravated harassment and magistrates imposed a six-week curfew that requires her to stay at her home address between 8pm and 8am. She was also ordered to pay Mr Orman £100 compensation for public embarrassment and humiliation, a £60 victim surcharge and court costs of £100.

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