Girl gangleader drops bid to avoid custody for torturing teenager in Belper

Court
Court

A girl gangleader has given up a bid to evade four months’ custody for the torture of a 13-year-old in Belper.

The offender appeared at Derby Crown Court on Friday after legal moves to overthrow the sentence imposed by a youth court on September 7.

But she dropped her appeal after documents had been studied by recorder Duncan Smith and two magistrates.

The recorder said the 15-year-old was in ‘peril’ of having the penalty toughened up.

“This court has the power to increase the sentence. This court has the papers and see nothing unduly excessive about this sentence,” he said.

Solicitor Annette Thomas, who represented the girl, had pointed out that other gang members had been given lengthy terms on probation but had not been sent into custody.

“There was a distinction between the others and her,” she said.

But after the recorder’s comments, she discussed the position with the girl and her mother before saying: “I abandon the appeal.”

At the end of the five-minute hearing, the recorder told the girl: “You must go down and finish your sentence.”

The youth court heard that the victim had cigarettes stubbed out on her right cheek and nettles rubbed into her left cheek. She was punched, kicked and had an abusive word written on lipstick on the back of her jacket.

The girl was forced to undergo the three-hour ordeal after calling one of the gang’s brothers ‘a waste of space’ in Belper.

Three other girls, aged 13 and 14, were put on probation for nine months and must each pay their victim £100 in compensation. All four admitted assault causing actual bodily harm.

The ringleader also admitted assaulting another girl in June and stealing a sandwich from a Co-op shop.

The gang attack took place on May 2 and the victim ended up in the Royal Derby Hospital. She needed treatment for a bruised vision which caused blurred vision.

She ended up hating to look at herself in the mirror and nervous about going out.