Teenager spared jail sentence for unprovoked street attack
PUBLISHED: 06:55 01 November 2019 | UPDATED: 10:34 01 November 2019
Avon and Somerset Constabulary
A teenager beat a man unconscious during an unprovoked alcohol-fuelled attack in Weston town centre.
Samuel Banks was spared jail despite kicking and stamping on the head of his defenceless victim in the early hours of May 3.
Moments earlier the victim had been knocked to the ground during a fight with another man, which Banks had encouraged.
After the man had been punched to the ground, images captured on CCTV, showed the 18-year-old repeatedly stamp and kick the victim in the head, who was curled in the fetal position, desperately trying to defend himself, until he went limp.
Prosecuting, May Li, said his friend pulled Banks off of his victim, and another man attempted to step in but Banks broke away and continued his relentless assault.
She said: "He returned to his victim and punched him in the face while he lay unconscious. A passing police vehicle arrived and he was then arrested."
Banks told officers he could not recall the incident because he was drunk.
Banks, of Cotswold Road, in Malvern, pleaded guilty to assault at North Somerset Courthouse on Tuesday.
A pre-sentence report said Banks was at high risk of re-offending, but had made 'positive progress' since the incident, including enrolling for GCSE classes, and receiving an offer of labour work in Birmingham, which showed 'growing maturity' and this 'would be lost' if he was jailed.
Defending, Kieran Hughes, said Banks had had problems with alcohol and called the incident an act of 'drunken stupidity'.
He said: "Mr Banks is not a sophisticated man and can be easily swayed.
"In prison he would be mixing with hardened criminals, in a place where drugs are common place and violence is a daily reality, and he would not cope."
Banks told magistrates he could not express how sorry he was for his action and that he was a changed person.
Sentencing, chief of the bench, Lisa Lovett said: "You have been very lucky this could have been a whole lot worse, so make sure to take the opportunity that has been given to you."
Banks received an 18-week jail term, suspended for two years. He was ordered to complete 40 rehabilitation days, serve a 12-week curfew and pay £200 costs.