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Men jailed over attack on blind man


British Transport Police praised the dignity of the victims

British Transport Police praised the dignity of the victims

British Transport Police praised the dignity of the victims

CCTV footage of a registered blind man being pushed onto the tracks during a violent assault at a train station has been released by British Transport Police (BTP).

The video shows the man being pushed off the platform at Chelmsford station in Essex and then punched as he tried to pull himself back up.

Police said his brother was also thrown on to the track during the "appalling" incident in which the brothers "could have been killed".

Two men from Colchester, Essex, have been jailed for 22 months and nine months respectively, BTP said.

Daniel Webster, 23, of Colchester Road, Coggleshall, pleaded guilty to grievous bodily harm and actual bodily harm against both victims, while Niall Martin, 24, of Speedwell Road, Colchester, pleaded guilty to ABH against one of the men.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard that in the early hours of Thursday February 20, the 31-year-old registered blind man, from Ipswich, who is also profoundly-deaf, was attacked on the platform whilst waiting for a train with his brother and a friend, BTP said.

The court was shown CCTV footage of the victim's 28-year-old brother coming to the aid of his sibling, only to be attacked in a horrifying assault which saw him thrown onto the track by Webster and attacked as he tried to clamber to safety.

Webster then threw the partially-sighted and deaf man onto the tracks, and punched him in the face as he tried to climb back onto the platform.

The court was shown further footage of Webster and Martin attacking the 28-year-old on the platform, police said.

Both victims were taken to hospital, where the 31-year-old old man had surgery on a fractured foot.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Alan Reed said: "This is one of the most appalling incidents I have investigated.

"Webster and Martin showed a savage disregard for their victims, and one of the brothers is still suffering from the injuries sustained to his foot.

"It is no exaggeration to say the brothers could have been killed after being thrown onto the tracks.

"I would like to pay tribute to the victims, who have shown great dignity following what was a terrifying ordeal for them."

The two men were sentenced on Wednesday, police said.

National deafblind charity Sense condemned the attack.

Richard Kramer, deputy chief executive, said: "This was a shocking incident and we are appalled that a person with both sight and hearing loss was attacked in this way. It is right and proper that the two men have now been brought to justice."

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