A WOMAN who assaulted a stranger at a bus stop claimed she was a constable sent to clean the streets of illegal immigrants, a court heard today.

Victim Adebimpe Metcalfe was waiting for a bus with her husband on Sunday, May 26, when she was attacked by 42-year-old Catherine Dillon.

Dillon approached Mrs Metcalfe – who is black and of African origin – and hurled racist insults at her, calling her a parasite and saying she was an illegal immigrant who was not supposed to be in the country.

During the unprovoked attack, Dillon also took Mrs Metcalfe’s glasses and threw them to the floor, before pushing her over as she tried to retrieve them.

A witness to the attack, which happened on Crown Street in Darlington, told Dillon she had called the police.

In response, it is claimed Dillon said: “I am a constable and I’ve been sent to get rid of the illegal immigrants. I’ve already moved illegal immigrants from the pub.”

At Darlington Magistrates Court today (Tuesday June 25), Dillon pleaded guilty to racially aggravated common assault.

Claire Haigh, mitigating, said Dillon – of Gladstone Street, Darlington - was ashamed of her actions and had no recollection of the incident as she had been drunk.

She said: “She cannot understand why she acted that way as she does not hold racist views. She has a number of neighbours of different backgrounds and gets on well with them.

“She is very ashamed and shocked at her own behaviour. Alcohol misuse is a big problem in her life. She had been a long term drug user and to her credit she has conquered that but her misuse of alcohol has since escalated.”

Chair of the bench Nicholas Edger handed Dillon a three month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months and ordered her to pay £100 compensation to the victim.