News bulletin: Man jailed for assault on disabled teenager and race hate crimes, bike thefts rise

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Man jailed for disability and race hate crimes, bike thefts in Merseyside on the rise, green spaces in Liverpool City Centre.

🚨 A man who kicked away the crutches from a disabled teenager on his way to school and later racially abused staff in a mobile phone store has been jailed.

Michael Cain, 32, of no fixed abode, was sentenced to 28 weeks in prison at Liverpool Crown Court this week.

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Cain assualted a 15-year-old boy near Liverpool city centre on April 20 around 10am. The boy was walking to a revision session at his school and was using crutches due to a lifelong, diagnosed medical condition.

He noticed that Cain was staring at him but didn’t want to engage with him in conversation. Cain then went up to him and shouted, “You don’t need crutches…you’re faking it.” He then kicked one of the boy’s crutches away and continued to threaten him with violence. The boy stumbled and then fell to the floor. Luckily a passer-by intervened and Cain made off.

On May 24 around 2.40pm, Cain entered the O2 store on Church Street in Liverpool city centre, with an issue with his mobile phone. The issue was dealt with but Cain seemed agitated and aggressive. He was asked to leave the store but started to hurl racist abuse at the staff member who fixed his phone.

He then threw more racist insults at another staff member who came to see what was happening. He lunged at the second woman and tried to assault her. He left the store but then came back and threw a drink at a display of electrical items, causing a lot of damage.

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🚲 Merseyside is one of the top five areas with the biggest increase of bike thefts in England. The latest data from the Office for National Statistics show that between 2020 and 2021, Merseyside saw bike thefts increase by 12% across the region. In 2020, Merseyside Police recorded 1,521 bicycle thefts versus 1,710 in 2021.

🏙️ According to new research, Liverpool has one of the least 'green' urban city centres in Britain. Despite boasting Green Flag Award-winning spaces like Sefton Park and Stanley Park nearby, the city centre ranks in the bottom three across England, Scotland and Wales.