Sisters guilty of ‘homophobic and racial’ assault

Rachel Bennet and Danielle Jenkinson ,arrive at Court. pic Richard Ponter 151510b
Rachel Bennet and Danielle Jenkinson ,arrive at Court. pic Richard Ponter 151510b

A pub boss denied carrying out a “racial and homophobic” street attack – claiming her false nails would have fallen out if she had landed a punch.

But Rachel Bennett and her sister Danielle Jenkinson were convicted of the drunken attack, which upset their victim so much that he quit college and left Scarborough.

Danielle Jenkinson ,arrives at Court. pic Richard Ponter 151510a

Danielle Jenkinson ,arrives at Court. pic Richard Ponter 151510a

They hurled slurs at their openly gay mixed race victim, as CCTV captured them volleying punches while he tried to fend them off.

Mum-of-two Bennett, 23, wept as she was convicted of the attack, although at Friday’s hearing it was her 19-year-old sibling who was portrayed as the ringleader.

Jenkinson had chatted to the victim inside Quids Inn after meeting through a mutual friend, but, unimpressed with her “attitude”, he walked off.

But the two sides met again later that night outside Bar Hush, where the sisters carried out the violent attack.

At Scarborough Magistrates’ Court, the sisters again clashed with their victim, as a heated argument broke out between the two sides while he gave 

And he spoke of the “lasting effects” of the December 5 assault, which left him bruised and emotionally scarred.

And speaking of the unprintable verbal abuse he received from the sisters, he said: “I’m used to it living in a small-minded town, but deep down it affects you.

“It does not make you feel nice about yourself.”

He scowled at the sisters’ supporters in court, before speculating the sisters “appeared to be on drugs” during the attack.

Bennett, of Richmond Court, claimed both she and Jenkinson had just stuck to wine, as she drowned her sorrows after losing her home that day.

And Bennett, a duty manager at a Scarborough pub, downplayed her role in the fracas, claiming she had attempted to “defuse” the situation – and that footage of her throwing a punch was a “natural reaction” to seeing her waitress sister pushed.

She claimed the false nails she wore in court mean she couldn’t even change a barrel at her pub, never mind throw a punch.

Both sisters denied being homophobic, claiming they had gay friends, with Bennett adding she thought the Asian victim was white.

But Jenkinson admitted she was “really drunk” that night, adding the night was a “blur”.

“I’m 99 per cent sure I didn’t call him that – I’m not like that,” said Jenkinson, of Ewart Street.

But the bench said they found the victim to be an “honest and credible witness”, adding: “We believe him – we accept his evidence of what happened that night.”

Both sisters had previously pleaded guilty to using threatening words that night, while Jenkinson had also admitted assault by beating at an earlier hearing. But Bennett had denied the assault, with both also pleading not guilty to racially aggravated assault and harassment.

They were convicted after the half-day trial, Jenkinson’s first conviction although her sister had previously been convicted of battery.

Magistrates ordered both to carry out a community order including 150 hours of unpaid work, with Bennett ordered to pay £400 costs – double that of her sister.

Both have to pay a £60 victim surcharge.