Yobs leave women scared to go out

PUBLISHED: 08:00 18 August 2014

North Somerset Courthouse.

North Somerset Courthouse.

Archant

TWO women were left feeling unsafe in their home after experiencing verbal abuse at the hands of a group of youths.

Rita Ponter and Margaret Smith, living on Weston’s Bournville estate, saw their property targeted by youngsters throwing sticks and stones for a number of months, North Somerset Courthouse heard on Monday.

Kirsty Ball, aged 22 and of no fixed abode, was charged with using threatening or abusive words or behaviour with intent to cause fear or provoke unlawful violence.

A 16-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to the same offence, which will be heard in the youth court.

Michael Collins, prosecuting, 
said: “The victims had experienced verbal abuse at the hands 
of local youths for some time. They had problems with sticks and stones being thrown at their premises.”

The court heard how Ball threw a stick at the window as part of a group – but Susan Cameron, defending, said her client did not get involved with the two women until this incident.

In a statement, Ms Ponter said: “We considered moving due to the problems we experienced.

“I was anxious and worried each night waiting for a bang or stone or something on the windows.

“We had to close the windows to stop items getting thrown in. Our animals were also getting frightened.

“I would get nervous even thinking about leaving the house in the evenings and would not go out because I thought someone might throw stones at me.

“I don’t want compensation or to stop them living in the area, I just want to feel safe in my home and not worry about my home or myself being attacked.”

Ball was also charged with using threatening behaviour for two other incidents in Alexandra Parade in July.

And she was charged with an attempt to cause criminal damage to Weston Angling Centre on July 31.

She was sentenced to eight weeks in prison concurrently for each offence and failing to adhere to a previous community order.

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