A 35-year-old man has been jailed for a horrific, unprovoked, racist attack on a man that left him with life-changing brain injuries. The drunken thug was seen on CCTV attacking the victim who was standing talking to a friend. A vile, racist rant to the police then followed.
On the night of the attack, 35-year-old Adam Farrell, who had earlier been kicked out of Coco's nightclub in Rochdale, started taking his belt off as if "readying for a fight" before the police arrived.
Minshull Street Crown Court heard how once Farrel was in the back of the police van he made a string of "despicable" racist statements, including "Pussy went down like a sack of black s***", and "Yo little n**** go to sleep, I hope he dies".
The victim was rushed to Salford Royal Hospital by emergency services and placed into intensive care after suffering swelling and bleeding to his brain.
Since the attack, the victim has made a partial recovery but will be "significantly impaired" for the rest of his life.
Farrell, of Middleton Road, Heywood, pleaded guilty to the charge of racially aggravated grievous bodily harm.
At his sentencing hearing today, Farrell told the judge: "I was really intoxicated. I didn't mean it."
Prosecutor Jennifer Devans-Tamakloe told the court how the attack took place on February 27 this year in the early hours of the morning, outside Yates on Packer Street in Rochdale Town Centre. Farrell, and the victim, were amongst 20 other people who were outside the bar at the time.
Farrell had earlier been removed from Coco's nightclub and was taking off his top and watch as if "getting ready to fight", Ms Devans-TamaKloe said. "He then walked up to him (the victim) and punched him once in the face. It was forceful and caused him to fall to the floor where he remained unconscious", she added.
She continued: "There was a short scuffle before the police arrived, and when they did he identified himself and began removing his belt as if getting ready to fight again. He was arrested and matters escalated in the police van where he made a number of statements."
The court was told how Farrell said to the police: "The only reason I smacked that guy was because they came running at me. Pussy went down like a sack of black s***. On my own, one punch. On my own here with like six or seven black guys. I don't care what you say, I hope he dies, f****** piece of black s***. If I do 15 years, not bothered. Yo little n**** go to sleep, hope he dies."
The victim was left with bruising to the front of the brain, as well as bleeding over the surface of the brain on both sides, he also suffered a fracture to his skull and a wound to his lip, said a consultant neurologist.
The victim was kept in intensive care while he received medication to control the pressure in his brain, he was then transferred to the neurology department. His treatment continued, including for low sodium levels which was a result of the injury. The neurologist told the court that the victim continues to suffer from cognitive impairment.
The victim's wife gave an emotional personal statement in court, saying: "The injury he suffered was from an unwarranted, senseless attack which will impact his life forever. We as a family are haunted by the horror of this extremely dangerous attack.
"I cannot imagine the reason why such an evil act happened to such a caring, funny, and people-oriented person. I am repulsed by the thought he attacked him just because of the colour of his skin. Adam Farrell has stolen his joy and given him a life sentence."
The victim's daughter said: "You attacked my father because you were uncomfortable with the colour of his skin. He was holding his phone and talking to somebody, he was in a position where he was unable to defend himself. "At that point, you decided to attack him and left him permanently brain-damaged - simply for the colour of his skin."
Farrel was said to have previous convictions relating to racially aggravated criminal damage, assault, and harassment.
Michael Johnson, defending, said "it was a moment of utter madness and senselessness".
Mr Johnson said that Farrell recognised and accepted the consequences of his actions and understood the impact it had upon the victim and his family. "This blow wasn't thrown because of the victim's ethnicity", he added.
Judge Bernadette Baxter said: "It is plain as to why it happened, because you are a racist. You took violent action because you are racist against a black man.
"There was no remorse when this man was lying on the floor, gasping for his life - not one jot of shame or remorse."
Adam Farrell was jailed for three years and four months for the attack.