Man in toy gun attack

By Marcus Dysch, April 22, 2009

A man has admitted shooting an Orthodox Jew with a pellet from a toy gun.

Kris Cherry told magistrates in Gateshead that he carried out the attack on March 14 because he “didn’t like Jews”.

The victim, who has not been named, was not injured despite being hit on the arm by the pellet. It is thought his overcoat saved him from greater harm.

Unemployed Cherry, 20, was in a car travelling through the centre of the Bensham community and said he had fired the gun “for a laugh”.

Defending, Michael Foley said his client’s dislike of Jews was linked to an incident in which a friend smashed a window and was later caught by a group of young Jewish men.

Cherry, of Bensham, admitted the attack had been “stupid” and, during the hearing on April 14, pleaded guilty to one count of religiously aggravated common assault.

He was bailed to reappear on May 6 to allow time for a pre-sentence report to be compiled.

Magistrates were told of his previous convictions, including a 2003 verdict of manslaughter — a 15-year-old friend had died after Cherry trapped him in a skip and set fire to it.

Last updated: 1:57pm, October 9 2009