A HUSBAND feared for his life when he tried to protect his wife from a gang of hooded youths.
They were walking home arm in arm when Adam English, who was one of a dozen teenagers hanging around near a subway in Washington, grabbed Anne Pascoe’s handbag with such force that it caused a painful whiplash-type injury.
When George Pascoe stepped in to protect his 51-year-old wife, he was beaten to the ground by five of the gang, who punched and kicked him until he feared for his life.
He needed a total of 19 stitches to wounds to his face and scalp and suffered a broken nose.
The 53-year-old engineer told police: “I ended up on the floor, struck numerous times.
“I couldn’t tell if it was feet or fists or weapons.
“I was bleeding and dazed, trying to get to my feet.
“I believe if I remained on the ground I would have suffered serious injuries, possibly worse.”
At Newcastle Crown Court English, 17, of Coach Road Estate, Washington, was given an eight-month detention and training order.
He had pleaded guilty to attempted robbery and unlawful wounding.
Mr Recorder Baker QC told the teenage thug: “Collectively and between you it was a sustained attack that involved punching him to the ground.
“It involved kicking him while on the ground and left him with a broken nose, lacerations to his scalp and facing a significant loss of blood.
“He required treatment in A&E.
“Mrs Pascoe continues to be afraid to be out at night.
“This is exactly the kind of fear to be on the streets that the courts are here to prevent.
“It was nasty street violence, which cannot be tolerated.”
The court heard Mr and Mrs Pascoe were targeted in Albany park in Washington last September, where they had noticed a gang of youths.
Prosecutor Michael Bunch told the court: “They noticed some of the males had hoods up and tops over their heads.
“Mrs Pascoe felt a tug to her handbag.
“She could see one of the males had taken hold of the bag.
“Her husband tried to intervene and he was struck to the back of the head.”
Glen Gatland, defending, said English, who had been drinking and taking valium, was not involved in kicking Mr Pascoe and had targeted the handbag in a bid to get cash to buy more drink.
Mr Gatland said English has done well on recent training courses and has good references.