February 15, 2019
Janice Morris was horrifically attacked in July 2018 and finally spoke out about it yesterday during a court hearing where another one of her attackers was convicted.
The helpless woman was sitting on a bench in Suffolk market town when five boys approached her and began their assault. They spat at her and covered her with food in an unprovoked frenzy.
According to the Daily Mail, Morris, 49, said she felt "shell-shocked" following the incident. One of the boys later posted it online to Snapchat, further humiliating the woman. As a reportedly schizophrenic and alcohol dependent victim, she could do little to defend herself.
"I don't know what I did to antagonize them. I wasn't anticipating it to happen. They got quite aggressive quite quickly. I was more shocked and surprised, I don't know exactly what I'm supposed to say."
Morris earlier told the court she had come outside to enjoy the "green space" and "trees" after just having drunk some whiskey. One of the boys was "more of a loose cannon" than the other four.
He spat at her and then they were "jumping about, laughing, [and] goading" her. They left for a short while then came back with flour and eggs. The picture clearly showed Morris covered fully in flour.
One of the boys, a 17-year-old whose name remains confidential, said he was not around for the attack. However, he willingly appeared in the picture with the rest of the boys who are all underage.
He said he was on his way home when he saw his friends and decided to join them for the horrific shot. Joined by his father, the boy defended himself saying:
"At the time I thought it was funny. I thought about it and it was wrong. I wasn't involved; only in the photo."
Yet Prosecutor Andrew Horner dismissed the boy's late timing to the event. He said: "The defendant attaches himself to a group he could clearly see were causing the complainant distress because he is in that group, he laughs, he smiles, he thinks it is funny."
"He joins in with the photograph, he becomes part of the group engaging in distressing behavior towards the complainant."
Magistrate Sally Westwood was in agreement, siding with Horner to deliver a guilty verdict. His sentencing will be held on March 7.
"The photo clearly indicates (the defendant) as a member of the group. He was not a bystander, he was smiling, pointing at Ms. Morris."
The four other boys present in the picture were sentenced last year to referral orders. They were also fined £100 to compensate their victim, as well as a £20 surcharge fine and £85 for legal fees.
Cohan Semple, 18, who took the photo, will do one year of community service. In a December tweet, crime correspondent for the East Anglian Daily Times, Tom Potter said it was Semple who had given up the names of his friends involved.
Semple has spoken publicly about how he now feels scared to leave his home due to death threats following his actions. Still, he refuses to apologize, saying he is not ready as a result of the threats.
"I’m struggling to leave the house at the moment. Since those pictures have gone on Facebook, I’ve had death threats from random people."
A small sense of sympathy is fathomable for the young man who committed such an atrocity against another human, however. We pray that all the boys turn their lives around after their punishments.
news.AmoMama.com does not support or promote any kind of violence, self-harm, or abusive behavior. We raise awareness about these issues to help potential victims seek professional counseling and prevent anyone from getting hurt. news.AmoMama.com speaks out against the above mentioned and news.AmoMama.com advocates for a healthy discussion about the instances of violence, abuse, sexual misconduct, animal cruelty, abuse etc. that benefits the victims. We also encourage everyone to report any crime incident they witness as soon as possible.