A TEENAGER needed 25 stitches and was left too scared to leave his house after he and his friends were violently attacked by a group of ‘young thugs’ in an underpass in Rotherham, a court heard.
Josh Pollard, aged 18, from Kimberworth, was set upon along with his pals in an underpass at the Ickles roundabout in Rotherham in the early hours of New Year’s Day.
Sheffield Crown Court heard Josh was punched and kicked in the head after being chased by his drunk attackers who shouted, ‘Come on then - let’s have it’.
The four thugs - Jak Shaw, 19, James McIntosh, 16, Ryan Burditt, 18, and Cole Stevenson, 20 - were handed community orders which the judge, Recorder Michael Hubbard QC, said were ‘virtually a term of imprisonment’.
Recorder Hubbard said: “This was a group attack, at night, in a public place. Each of you had far too much to drink and the citizens in this area are entitled to go about their business without young thugs behaving as you did.”
The court heard Josh suffered a suspected broken nose, cuts to his lip, and injuries to his lower jaw, needing 25 stitches.
In a statement, the teenager said he became isolated following the ordeal. “What happened to me was totally unprovoked - I’m worried it could happen again,” Josh said.
Paul O’Shea, prosecuting, told the court Josh had been to a New Year’s Eve party, then visited the Chilliz takeaway on Ship Hill, Rotherham, at around 4.30am.
The two groups first met in the takeaway, where Shaw and Josh’s friend Devon Lynch ‘exchanged words’ before heading outside for a fight.
Stevenson broke up the violence before Josh and his friends ran off. They caught a taxi, but eventually made their way on foot when the driver refused to let another pal join them during the journey.
As they entered the underpass, they saw the thugs standing at the opposite end.
“Having said, ‘Come on then, let’s have it’, they ran very quickly towards the complainant’s group, causing them to scatter,” Mr O’Shea said.
Burditt chased two of the victims, while Shaw was seen punching Josh in the face before he fell. McIntosh later admitted kicking Josh in the face while he was on the ground.
“The complainant remembers nothing thereafter,” Mr O’Shea said.
Burditt, who works for a poultry firm, told officers in interview the reason the two groups clashed is that his friends were from Catcliffe, while the others were from Brinsworth.
“Those areas don’t get on for whatever reason,” Mr O’Shea said, adding Shaw, a Sheffield College student, accepted he had ‘no right or reason to hit anybody’.
Shaw admitted assault occasioning ABH, while McIntosh pleaded guilty to causing GBH. Stevenson and Burditt admitted affray.
Shaw, of Spa Well Crescent, Treeton, and McIntosh, of Studmoor Road, Kimberworth, were sentenced to a two-year community order with 12 months’ supervision, 175 hours of unpaid work and a tagged curfew between 7pm and 7am.
McIntosh is in custody until November 18, serving a sentence for affray and racially aggravated GBH.
Stevenson, of Mappins Road, Catcliffe, and Burditt, of High Hazel Crescent, Catcliffe, will serve the same order but with 100 hours’ unpaid work.
Shaw must pay Josh £500 compensation.