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Wednesday, 03 September 2014

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Barrow sisters convicted of attacking woman in street

TWO Barrow sisters who beat up a woman in the street in an unprovoked attack have been convicted.

Toni Marie Swarbrick, 21, and Jamie Lea Swarbrick, 18, both of Penrith Street, attacked Laura Barton as she walked along Greengate Street with her boyfriend in the early hours of October 12.

Furness Magistrates’ Court heard that both sisters shouted obscenities at Miss Barton such as “slag” and “slapper” from across the road, before rushing over and assaulting her. They had both been drinking.

Prosecutor Mrs Lisa Hine said Toni Swarbrick pushed Miss Barton to the chest, causing her to fall.

Jamie Swarbrick  then kicked Miss Barton back down to the ground whenever she tried to get up.

Mrs Hine, added: “Both defendants kicked out at Miss Barton, and her boyfriend had to grab hold of the defendants by the arms and throw them to the ground.”

Police officers were called to the scene and arrested both women.

Toni Swarbrick was jailed for 140 days for assault by beating yesterday. She was on bail at the time of the incident.

Her younger sister escaped prison and was given a 150-day jail sentence, suspended for a year.

She was ordered to pay £200 in compensation to Miss Barton and £100 court costs, as well as attend an alcohol treatment programme.

In a statement read aloud, Miss Barton said the assault had left her shaken and scared to go out.

She said: “Since the attack my life has changed quite considerably. I used to go out regularly in Barrow but now I barely go out.”

On the day of the sisters’ hearing in court, Toni Swarbrick pleaded guilty on the basis that no kicking was involved, however the plea was not accepted by the prosecution.

They were both found guilty after a trial on December 19.

District judge Gerald Chalk said: “This was a horrible incident. It was a group attack and a sustained assault.”

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