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Man sentenced for violent attack on trans woman in Brighton

A man has been sentenced for a violent attack he carried out in Brighton.

Philip Poole, 41, was handed down a suspended prison sentence for attacking 25-year-old Connie McLaughlan.

As well as verbally abusing the trans victim, Poole also pulled her hair and punched her.

Police line do not cross

Brighton Magistrates’ Court heard that Poole had hurled abuse at PC Rachel Standing, a police officer who responded to McLaughlan’s cries for help.

The 12-month prison sentence was handed down suspended for 18 months after Poole pleaded guilty to common assault and intentional harassment, alarm and distress.

He will also be required to carry out 25 days of rehabilitation activity.

The assailant was also fined £40 for the abuse directed at PC Standing and he had to pay £45 in prosecution costs and a victim surcharge of £115.

In addition, Poole is also required by the court to pay £225 in compensation to the victim.

Sussex Police hate crime sergeant Peter Allan said: “I am pleased the court has convicted the defendant in this case. No one should be targeted in this way because of who they are.

“This sentence sends out a clear signal that we will take a robust approach to those who target individuals based on their gender identity or sexual orientation. I hope this case will encourage other victims of hate to report such behaviour to the police.

“What was really pleasing to me in relation to this case is that four members of the public came to the assistance of the victim, one of who called the police and waited with the victim until they arrived.

“You do not have to become physically involved to stand up to hate. Offering a supportive word and calling the police is more than most people would do.

“I wrote a letter of thanks to the member of the public, acknowledging her actions in supporting a fellow human being in their time of need.”

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