Men admit brawling in gas station
A group of men yesterday admitted attacking a female and her companion in a brawl at a Hamilton gas station.
Shannon Ingham and Tulio Escolastica were set upon by six men at Esso Tiger Mart last summer.
The pair were beaten by the mob, who then attempted to drag them out of the Richmond Road gas station while shouting: We are going to kill you.
Brian Batson, 20, Rahki Paul, 19, Jahfari Raynor, 19, Sadune Raynor, 18, and Akiri Trott yesterday admitted attacking Mr Escolastica and causing wilful damage during the brawl.
Trott, Paul and Jahfari also admitted assaulting Ms Ingham in the incident.
The sixth attacker, 23-year-old Umdae Woolridge, had previously admitted causing grievous bodily harm to Mr Escolastica.
Trott is from Smiths and Woolridge is from St Georges; the remaining defendants reside in Pembroke.
Crown counsel Geoffrey Faiella told the court that the incident occurred around 2.20am last August 12.
He said that Mr Escolastica and Ms Ingham went to the Tiger Mart and found Paul blocking the door.
Mr Escolastica repeatedly asked Paul to move, but he refused to budge.
The pair tried to squeeze past, but Paul grabbed at Mr Escolasticas arm and followed him into the store, shouting: Im going to fight you. Im going to beat your p**** a**.
The complainant told Paul to calm down, but the defendant continued his taunts until Mr Escolastica punched him.
As the two men began to trade blows, Jahfari entered the fray. When Ms Ingham attempted to intervene, Jahfari started hitting her.
The other four defendants then entered the store and joined the fight, repeatedly punching and kicking the complainants. After a short time, the group attempted to drag the victims out of the store.
Members of the group were heard to say: We are going to kill you. We are going to get you. We are going to f*** you up. This is the wrong clique to mess with.
Mr Escolastica was taken to King Edward VII Memorial Hospital for treatment of injuries including a fractured nose and a black eye.
Ms Ingham refused medical treatment but suffered a busted lip, bruising and a cut to the forehead in the altercation.
Around $320 of food items and some of the stores shelves, were damaged in the fight. The store, which is usually open 24 hours a day, was closed following the incident until 6am.
The victims were reluctant to speak with police following the attack, but the entire incident was recorded on CCTV cameras.
The six defendants initially pleaded not guilty to the charges. Woolridge pleaded guilty in May, saying he was trying to protect his friend.
The trial for the remaining defendants was scheduled to start yesterday but the men reversed their pleas beforehand.
The court heard that all of the defendants except for Paul have previous convictions.
Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo ordered social inquiry reports and told the defendants to return to court on October 17 for sentencing.
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