A FOUL-mouthed man who repeatedly punched a woman on a bus in a violent and unprovoked attack has been jailed.
Reece Sinclair (20) spat in the mum’s face and left her with facial injuries so bad she needed hospital treatment, Sheffield Crown Court heard.
He was sentenced to 16 months in a young offenders’ institution after a judge, who condemned the “unprovoked, aggressive, violent assault”, concluded there was otherwise no realistic prospect of rehabilitation.
Ms Holly Clegg, prosecuting, said the defendant, of Nelson Street, Rotherham, and the victim had been on a bus in Sheffield city centre at 3.45pm in December 2020 when trouble flared.
She said Sinclair had made his way to the door of the bus but stayed on it while shouting at two males outside.
“He threatened the males, telling them to go to Rotherham, where he would ‘knock them the f*** out’,” said Ms Clegg.
“He said: ‘You Firth Park boys need to go to Rotherham’.”
Sinclair had stayed on the bus and leant out of a window near the victim, shouting at the males outside, before accusing the woman of looking at him, said Ms Clegg.
She added: “He continued to shout abuse at [the victim], called her a slag and threatened to knock her out.”
The woman had told Sinclair that she had just wanted to go home, but he had got up and punched her before blocking her from getting off the bus and threatening to “slap her stupid”, the prosecutor said.
Sinclair spat at the victim before punching her several times in the face.
The cornered passenger had tried to defend herself and managed to push Sinclair off the bus, but he had got back on and started punching her again, Ms Clegg said.
When he did climb off the bus again, he had shouted: “”Watch you f***ing slag, watch what happens.”
The court heard police had found Sinclair the following month because he had shouted out his full name during the incident.
In a statement read out in court, the victim said: “This was a totally unprovoked attack by a complete stranger and I am worried something like this could happen again.”
She said she had needed hospital treatment for her injuries and had taken time off work to recover.
Sinclair, who had nine convictions for 17 previous offences including battery and domestic violence, admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm at a previous hearing at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court.
Mitigating, Mr Dale Harris said Sinclair had a problem managing any conflict or anything that challenged his behaviour.
Judge Sarah Wright asked Mr Harris why Sinclair had made an outburst while the prosecutor had been talking.
Mr Harris said Sinclair had objected to the assertion by the victim that she had stated that she wanted to go home when the CCTV footage showed there had clearly been more dialogue between them.
The defence barrister said Sinclair had re-offended since the assault, which showed he had a deep-rooted problem.
Sentencing Sinclair to 16 months in a young offenders’ institution, Judge Wright said he had launched an “unprovoked, aggressive, violent assault” on the woman, leaving her with “nasty” facial injuries.
She said there was no realistic prospect that Sinclair could be rehabilitated in the community.