Horror as 5-year-old ‘booted’ in unprovoked attack

A mother has spoken of her horror after a man attacked her five year old in Crawley town centre. Nadia Winnifrith with her sons Ryder and Bobby. Pic Steve Robards SR1706058 SUS-170327-220004001
A mother has spoken of her horror after a man attacked her five year old in Crawley town centre. Nadia Winnifrith with her sons Ryder and Bobby. Pic Steve Robards SR1706058 SUS-170327-220004001
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A horrified mother has spoken of her outrage over the sentence given to man who attacked her five-year-old son.

Nadia Winnifrith said her son Ryder was ‘booted in the stomach’ as they walked through Crawley town centre.

Leslie Turner, 39, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to assaulting the youngster by beating at Crawley Magistrates’ Court, said Sussex Police.

He also pleaded guilty to assaulting a police officer and was sentenced to 16 weeks in prison.

A court document said: ‘Committed to prison for 16 week. Reason: Offence so serious because unprovoked attack on a 5-year-old boy’.

Sussex Police confirmed the boy was kicked.

Nadia said her son had been left traumatised by the attack which happened in February. She felt the sentence was too lenient.

She said: “He booted him in the stomach. Literally we have been in town two minutes. We were walking along without a care in the world and he has just booted him.”

Nadia had gone out for the day with her two boys.

They had spent the morning at the dinosaur park in Southwater Country Park before getting dropped off in town by a friend to go and get their hair cut.

It was on the walk to Lloyds Barbers, in High Street, that they crossed paths with Turner.

Nadia said: “She dropped us where Road Radio is. He was walking along as if he had just come from the Asda store heading towards the church.

“We have literally walked from Road Radio to the opening of where the church is and didn’t even make it to the hairdressers.”

After Ryder was attacked, Nadia grabbed both children and ran.

“I literally took the boys into the hairdressers and I screamed,” she said.

Police arrived and arrested Turner.

Nadia said Ryder has been having nightmares since the attack, constantly asking, ‘Why has the bad man kicked me?’

She said: “He was waking up crying, thinking the man would come and get him. It was shocking. I was traumatised.

“We had been at the park, had a nice day, went to get our hair cut and we’ve been attacked in the town centre.

“It would traumatise any adult let alone a child.”

Turner appeared at court on February 22.

He was also ordered to pay £115 victim surcharge.

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