Man 'forced to change daily routine' after antisemitic abuse at Merseyside pub

A 68-year-old man was given a suspended sentence for racially and religiously aggravated harassment


A victim of antisemitic abuse at a Southport pub has told a court the ordeal "shook him to his core", leaving him "very anxious about wearing a kippah".

Merseyside Police said Edward Ossian verbally attacked the man in the Merseyside seaside town’s Beer Inn on 21 September 2022.

The subject of Mr Ossian’s abuse told Sefton Magistrates' Court on Wednesday that the incident had made him question where he felt safe and impacted his family life.

Mr Ossian received a 12-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months.

The 68-year-old admitted to racially and religiously aggravated harassment.

Speaking to the court, the targeted Jewish man said Mr Ossian’s "comments said to me shook me to my core".

"I should be able to go out without the stress of being verbally berated," he said.

"The incident has impacted on my daily life.

"I have changed my routines to avoid any further confrontation.

"It has impacted on my family life and where I feel safe to go."

The complainant said he had since been "very anxious" about wearing a kippah in public "because the stress of antisemitism and all that comes with being openly Jewish today".

Alongside his conviction, Mr Ossian has been mandated to undergo 20 days of rehabilitation activities.

He was also slapped with a three-year restraining order and an eight-week requirement to wear an electronic tag.

Speaking following the sentencing, Detective Inspector Matthew Kerr told the BBC that hate crime "simply will not be tolerated" in Merseyside, and that police "take all reports of hate crime extremely seriously".

"Ossian will now have a criminal record and the consequences of this in the future could prove to be significant.

"I would like to take this opportunity to reassure people that we have specially trained officers who investigate cases with a view to robust action being taken against offenders". 

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