A RACIST thug who attacked a shopkeeper with a hammer after he was caught shoplifting has been served with some justice of his own.

Daniel Jewson hurled racist abuse at the owner of Hadj’s Mini Market when he was confronted about stealing packets of chewing gum from the Hartlepool store.

The 32-year-old left the scene but soon returned armed with a hammer before launching a violent attack on the shop owner.

Teesside Crown Court heard how Jewson manged to land one blow on his victim before turning his attention to smashing up the shop.

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Rachel Masters, prosecuting, said: “Immediately he rushed towards (the victim) and attempted to hit him from in front of the counter area.

"He made a number of attempts to do this. He wrestled with him and tried to stop him.

"In the process the defendant hit the counter area causing significant amounts of damage.”

The defendant used the hammer to destroy the shop’s lottery machine and till before smashing a window as he left the shop in the town centre.

Miss Masters said the shopkeeper only suffered minor pain in his arm.

In a victim impact statement, the shopkeeper said he and his staff regularly faced racist abuse but nothing could have prepared him for what happened when Jewson attacked him with the hammer.

Jewson, of Elliott Street, Hartlepool, pleaded guilty to a racially aggravated public order offence, affray, and criminal damage, following the attack on March 20 last year.

Stephen Constantine, in mitigation, said his client had been on a three-day alcohol binge linked to struggles with his mental health.

He added: “The pre-sentence report describes genuine regret for his actions and an apology to the victim in this case.”

Recorder Nathan Adams jailed the defendant for a total of six months for all three offences telling him that only an immediate custodial sentence was appropriate.

“Your actions on that day were wholly inexcusable,” he said. “What started off as shoplifting for some gum should have ended there. Matters escalated very quickly, the store operator followed you out and you shouted racial abuse at him, again that should have been the end of it.

“You decided to come back, you armed yourself with a hammer, you decided to get revenge because you considered yourself the victim.

“It’s quite clear that you attempted to assault the man with the hammer, you swung several times at him and connected once on the arm.

“You started to smash up the till and the lottery machine before breaking the window on the way out.”

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