Racist spared after probation blunder

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First published in News

A MAN who shouted racist abuse at police after being caught taking drugs has been told he doesn't have to do his unpaid work– as the probation service forgot about him.

Anthony Hogg, of Bowleymead, Eldene, was spared a jail term for the abuse when he appeared in court last year, despite being on a suspended sentence at the time for drunken violence.

The 27-year-old water company worker had launched the volley of racist comments at officers arresting him after he was caught snorting cocaine in a nightclub toilet.

In August last year a judge told him: “This is almost certainly your last chance,” as he imposed a 12-month community order with 80 hours of unpaid work.

But the probation office did not inform him of when to turn up for the community service until last month, when the order was almost over.

And a judge sitting at Swindon Crown Court said the father would not have to do the hours as it wasn’t his fault.

Recorder Robert Pawson said: “There has been a complete failure to do these hours but that is not the fault of Mr Hogg.

“He has shown an excellent level of compliance and enforcing these hours would be detrimental.

“The reason he has not done these hours it seems is by result of the probation service failing to send out re-instruction letters that he needed to comply with these hours.

“That didn't happen until July this year, one month before the end."

Hogg was detained by door staff at Old Town's defunct The Spot, at 1.30am on Sunday, June 2 last year, after reports of him doing cocaine in the toilets.

By the time they got him to the front door of the establishment the police were waiting to speak to him but he became abusive.

Colin Meeke, prosecuting, told the court: “He threatened to murder them and eat their eyeballs.”

Because a police van had to be called, they were left waiting outside while a large number of other clubbers walked past in the busy night time area.

“They described his mood as becoming increasingly erratic. He became abusive to them and abusive generally.”

Hogg shouted at them using racist terms that they wouldn’t be doing what they were doing if he were from another race.

Mr Meeke said the racist language was not aimed at anyone in particular. He said: “He was clearly inebriated by drugs or alcohol, it is not clear which.”

Hogg admitted possessing cocaine, a racially aggravated public order offence and breaching a suspended sentence.

He was put on the 32-week suspended sentence at Cardiff Crown Court in November 2012 after he admitted affray.

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