Royals: Noel Phillips on Harry and Meghan trailer
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Noel Phillips, who works as the US correspondent for Good Morning Britain hit headlines last year when it was made public that he had been attacked by a 17-year-old in London. The attacker “mugged, racially assaulted and spat on” Noel, with the ITV star speaking out after it was made known that the young boy would be avoiding prison.
So, it was shocking more than anything!
Noel said during the attack he was repeatedly called the N-word by the child and his necklace was snatched before the 17-year-old proceeded to spit in his face.
The juvenile, who was arrested after being chased by Noel on a busy street in London, appeared before magistrates where the judge handed down a rehabilitation order.
Noel admitted that his life had been “turned upside down” after the incident, and has called for “more robust penalties” for those who “demonise” people for the colour of their skin.
He told The Mirror: “I was completely shocked. I didn’t realise what was happening. He was trying to pull my bag and everything around my neck. My T-shirt was ripped.
“But he managed to take off with a necklace and then that’s when I realised I had frozen for a couple of seconds and then gave chase.”
Only concerned with finding his necklace, Noel was left “furious” when the teen decided to spit in his face.
Noel said: “I was keen at the time not to press any charges. I was just kind of saying to him, ‘Hey, listen, if you tell me where the item is, this can all be over’.
“That’s when [the attacker] got verbal, spitting and then using the N-word. I had to wipe the spit away from my face.”
Noel says that after a two-hour search, he was able to recover his necklace while his attacker was taken into custody for robbery and racially aggravated assault.
The ITV correspondent admitted that he felt “frustrated” that someone his perpetrator’s age would commit such crimes.
He said: “I felt more frustrated and I think it was quite sad that someone as young as him [would do that].
“I like to think we live in a multicultural country and London is very multicultural. So, it was shocking more than anything that he was able to use such language and belittle someone in an attempt to make them feel like they’re pretty worthless because of the colour of his skin.
“It’s sort of helped me to understand and to shape my own understanding of the fact that there is still a big problem in society when it comes to race and we shouldn’t be afraid to talk about it.
“For him to have been shouting the N-word in public like that tells us that there are still issues.”
On January 11, a judge handed the teen a youth rehabilitation order which required him to participate in victim awareness and restorative justice projects for 15 days.
He will also be under curfew with electronic monitoring for 10 weeks but received no jail time.
Noel made his feelings very clear to the publication as he believes the attacker “should be held to account” for his actions.
Noel also said that the attacker should “be sent to prison” to “understand the severity of his crimes”.
He added: “You can’t go around spitting in people’s faces and calling them N****** on the basis that you couldn’t get away with their property that you tried to steal.
“Will education and an anti-racist course help this young man? I don’t know. But will it sort of force people who are perhaps racist not to be so direct or at the forefront of their racism?”
Noel concluded that he thinks being held to account will “show that the system does work” and that he thinks “more robust and tougher penalties” are needed to put a stop to these kinds of attacks.
A spokesperson for the judiciary said: “We cannot comment on individual sentences but all judges and magistrates sentence according to the law set by parliament and the sentencing guidelines set by the Independent Sentencing Council as well as the facts of each case, which may have aggravating or mitigating factors.”
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