The mum of teenager who suffered horrific injuries in a one-punch street attack says she feels ‘cheated’ by the justice system after the thug who launched the attack was spared jail.
Billy Close was out celebrating his 19th birthday in Newcastle city centre when he was punched by Jordan Cooper in an unprovoked attack.
Billy was left fighting for his life after suffering catastrophic injuries and had to have two metal plates inserted into his head.
The Newcastle Chronicle reports man who started the tragic chain of events, James Widdowson, has been back in court for obstructing a police officer in the execution of their duty.
But despite the fact he had been handed an eight-week suspended prison sentence for the attack on Billy, Widdowson once again avoided a spell behind bars.
Billy’s mum Michaila said: “It’s so frustrating, I was stunned when I heard what he had got, I cried my eyes out.
“I had to come home and tell Billy what the outcome was and he is absolutely devastated – and furious.
“We have had to go through this all again and Widdowson is still not in jail. It is absolutely ridiculous.”
Billy cannot remember anything about the attack which happened in the early hours of Sunday, February 28 this year.
CCTV footage showed Widdowson starting the chain of events.
He pushes Billy after approaching him at a taxi rank in Newcastle City Centre.
A man attempts to get Widdowson away from his victim, but fails.
Then without warning, Cooper comes at Billy from the side and fells him with a single blow.
The victim can be seen lying out-cold on the ground close to passing cars as a crowd gathered around him and attempted to pull him up.
Meanwhile, Widdowson is seen walking calmly but quickly away from the scene.
Cooper, of Warwick Street, Blyth, admitted grievous bodily harm at Newcastle Crown Court.
The 22-year-old, who has a previous conviction for another violent city centre assault, was jailed for two-and-a-half years.
Widdowson, 20, admitted common assault.
For his latest offence, Widdowson appeared at North Tyneside Magistrates’ Court and pleaded guilty to obstructing a police officer in the execution of his duty and was handed a 12-month conditional discharge.
He was also made to pay a £20 victim surcharge and costs of £50.