Cabbie left to die after kicking by 'cowards'

A CABBIE from Weston who was viciously ambushed by a group of 'cowardly' thugs may never work again after undergoing eight hours of brain surgery

A CABBIE from Weston who was viciously ambushed by a group of 'cowardly' thugs may never work again after undergoing eight hours of brain surgery. Mike Barber had to have an emergency operation to remove a life-threatening blood clot from his brain after being kicked and stamped repeatedly on the back of his head while he lay face down in the road. The 46-year-old was set upon after he got out of his Vauxhall Vectra estate at the junction of Madam Lane and Ebdon Road in Worle at around 11.30pm last Friday.Mike, a father-of-one, was knocked to the ground in the 'horrific' attack which left splinters of his skull embedded in his brain.During the eight-hour operation at Frenchay Hospital in Bristol, Mike, of Osbourne Road, suffered from heart complications and required a four-hour recovery period. At the time of going to press, Mike's condition had improved. He is now stable.Stunned colleagues at Woodspring Taxis where Mike works have started a collection on his behalf to help him pay his bills when he gets out of hospital. They have been joined by fellow cab drivers from ARC and Apple taxis, both based in the resort. His sister, Linda, and his brother-in-law, Dave Elliott, have been at his bedside every day since the 'sickening' assault.Dave said: "I think it is disgusting that something like this could happen. He has lost everything, his livelihood and his hobbies. Mike's a keen fisherman and used to drive all over the country. Now he's been told by surgeons he cannot drive for at least a year.He added: "He is still very groggy and his head is pounding. He seems okay but it doesn't bear thinking about what might have happened."The police need to find the people who did this and they must face the consequences of their actions. Leaving a man to die is no way to behave."Mike has lived in Weston all his life and went to Wyvern Community School.He started working at Woodspring Taxis five years ago and often did nightshifts. Woodspring Taxis' managing director, John Lees, said: "I've never seen anything like it. It is truly horrific. Nothing like this has happened to any taxi driver before in Weston."l Four teenagers have been arrested in connection with the incident but the offenders responsible are still being sought. The teenagers have been released on bail pending further enquiries. Police are appealing for the passengers of a car that slowed down as Mike was being assaulted to come forward as they may have vital information. Anyone with any information about the attack should call Weston criminal investigation department on 0845 4567000 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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