Mansfield man attacked taxi driver after refusing to pay soiling charge

COURT: Court Case
COURT: Court Case

A Mansfield man who vandalised a taxi and attacked its driver after refusing to pay a clean up charge when he was sick on the back seat has escaped a jail sentence.

Michael Francis Gallen, 49 of Portland Street, was found guilty of assault by beating and causing criminal damage in the incident on 5th January.

He appeared at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday for sentencing following his trial in August.

The court was told Gallen (49), had been among four people picked up by the ABC taxi at 1.45am at the Sunnydale pub at Mansfield Woodhouse.

Gallen had sat behind the front passenger seat and as the taxi began its journey he had vomited in the rear.

The taxi driver had stopped and told him he would be charged for soiling the vehicle.

Father of two Gallen who was the worse for drink, swore at the driver and said he was not going to pay, despite his fellow passengers apologising for his behaviour.

Gallen had then opened the rear taxi door and had taken hold of the roof handle, pulling it off.

He had taken money out of his pockets, repeating that he was not going to pay anything.

The driver then sensed his door being opened and the defendant he only knew at the time as ‘Mick’, punched him several times in the head and broke the taxi’s wiper stalk.

Gallen who initially denied the offence, said he could remember nothing about the incident.

He was sentenced to a 12 months Community Penalty with 100 hours unpaid work, ordered to pay £50 compensation to the taxi firm and £125 to the driver, with £620 costs and a victim surcharge.

The chairman of the Magistrates told him he had been lucky not to have been jailed.