Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Pair Jailed for Attack on Busy Metro Train; ARGUMENT ESCALATED INTO BLOODY ASSAULT IN PUBLIC VIEW

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Pair Jailed for Attack on Busy Metro Train; ARGUMENT ESCALATED INTO BLOODY ASSAULT IN PUBLIC VIEW

Article excerpt

Byline: ROB KENNEDY Court Reporter rob.kennedy@ncjmedia.co.uk @ChronicleCourt

SHOCKING scenes of violence erupted on a Metro at rush hour as petty squabbling ended in bloodshed.

Thomas Tams and Callum McAlpine had been travelling with victim Steven Forbes on a train between Newcastle city centre and the airport.

But Tams and McAlpine started bickering with Mr Forbes over PS10 and matters escalated in front of a packed carriage, including children.

Mr Forbes was repeatedly punched then kicked in the head and was left bleeding heavily from his gashed cheek.

A court heard a 15-year-old witness recorded some of the vicious assault on his mobile phone, providing crucial evidence.

Now 21-year-old Tams, who already had 87 previous convictions, and McAlpine, 18, have been locked up at Newcatle Crown Court for assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Prosecutor Michael Bunch said the 15-year-old noticed the trio get on the Metro and sit near him around 5pm on Wednesday, April 12.

Mr Bunch said: "He said he took notice of them because they were loud, shouting and arguing.

"He said the two defendants were arguing with Mr Forbes about a tenner, saying they chipped in for something and weren't going to get it and they protested they were his friend.

"Mr Forbes moved away but they continued to argue and said they wanted to fight him. He said he wanted to be civil and not fight with them."

The court heard it was as the Metro pulled in to Regent Centre, in Gosforth, that Tams and McAlpine attacked Mr Forbes.

Mr Bunch said: "McAlpine is described as pushing him twice hard to the chest.

"They continued to argue and Mr Forbes tried to walk away.

"At this point the student began to film events using his mobile phone.

"He describes events, with Mr Forbes standing up and the two defendants started to punch him to the head and chest, over and over.

"Mr Forbes had his hands raised trying to protect his face.

"The defendants got off the train then re-boarded the train.

"Tams approached Mr Forbes and kicked him to the head, causing his head to strike the window and start bleeding.

"Tams continued to punch him a few more times before getting off the train. …

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