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Woman fined for abusing Muslims and smashing windows at Turkish community centre

Woman fined for abusing Muslims and smashing windows at Turkish community centre

Categories: Latest News

Wednesday August 17 2016

The Metro and The Gazette report on the sentencing of a woman who subjected a group of Muslims to verbal abuse before smashing the windows of the community centre where they had gathered during Ramadan.

Teresa Dent, 46, approached the Turkish Community Centre in Colchester around 10.45pm on 10 June as Kenan Karatay and a friend sat inside enjoying refreshments after breaking fast.

Dent shouted at the men “what are you doing in there, why are you here, this is my country”.”

She continued abusing them shouting “Can I come in, I want to see what you are doing in there.”

The men heard Dent’s shouting and Mr Karatay at one point went outside to plead with her to leave them alone reminding her that she was disturbing them on private property.

Dent then began thumping on the front door and screaming at the men “are you going to bomb us next? Go back to your own country. I have a daughter at home, are you going to rape her?”

Dent proceeded to smash the front windows of the community centre with her fist. When police and paramedics arrived to administer first aid, she persisted with the abuse shouting at the men “are you all rapists? Go back to your own countries.”

Dent admitted racially aggravated criminal damage and racially aggravated harassment when she appeared before a judge at Colchester Magistrates’ Court this week.

A probation report prepared on Dent claimed she suffered mental health issues and her behaviour on that night was driven by her belief she was “witnessing a terrorism meeting.”

District Judge John Woollard said: “Taking into account the difficulties I have read about so far as you mental health is concerned but these are serious offences and they could have led to something far more serious and encouraged others to join in.

“There is nothing to suggest these people deserved in any way, shape or form what you did and your failure to control your mental health problems was the root of this problem.”

Dent was given a 12-month community order, fined £50 and told to pay £245 compensation plus £170 for other court costs.


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