A VULNERABLE taxi driver was left battered and bruised after an unprovoked attack by two drunken thugs.
Andrew Headland was pinned to the ground by one as the other ‘kicked his head like a football’ following a dispute over a fare, Worksop Magistrates Court heard.
The assault happened in the early hours of 10th December close to the Co-op on Doncaster Road in Carlton.
Both Nathan McEvoy, 21, and Michael Robinson, 23, were out drinking in Worksop on the evening of Friday 9th December.
The court heard how they, and a woman, got into Mr Headland’s blue Mondeo outside Argos in Bridge Place just after 4am.
They asked for the woman to be dropped off at an address in Carlton before going on to Dinnington, but were unable to pay for the journey.
Mr Headland said: “The bigger one of the two (Robinson) gave me £10 and said ‘that will get us to Dinnington’. I said it wouldn’t as the fare was already at £13.”
“Then I got attitude off the smaller one of the two (McEvoy). I told them I wasn’t going anywhere until I get money up front.”
Mr Headland phoned his dad, also a taxi driver, to see if there was a cash machine nearby. He drove to the Co-op on Doncaster Road but there wasn’t one there.
When it became clear the two were not going to hand over any more money, Mr Headland asked them to get out of the car.
The pair refused because they had no way of getting home. Mr Headland got out of the car and called the police.
“I was scared it was going to get out of hand physically. My dad had just got home and I asked him to come down,” Mr Headland said.
“The smaller one locked himself in the car and was taunting me saying ‘daddy, daddy’ and then he said he was going to ‘drop me’.”
McEvoy got out the car and had an altercation with Mr Headland before they broke. Mr Headland’s father then tried to keep McEvoy calm while his son tried to get Robinson out of the car.
The two of them grappled before falling to the floor. Robinson then straddled Mr Headland and pinned his arms to his chest.
McEvoy then ran round and kicked Mr Headland up to four times to the head and ribs.
“I said ‘please let me up - I can’t breathe’,” Mr Headland added.
His dad Michael told the court: “He (McEvoy) ran around and lashed out like he was kicking a football and carried on running.”
“He then tried to dislodge a brick from a nearby wall but fortunately it didn’t come off.”
Andrew Headland suffered a black eye and bruising to the face, as well as cuts across his nose and scratches to the top of his head.
District Judge Diane Baker convicted them both of common assault. She said: “This was an assault on a public servant in the early hours of the morning, while you were in drink.”
“It’s had a psychological effect on him and the way he does his job.”
McEvoy, of Kieran Close, Dinnington, and Robinson, of Manor Road, Dinnington, who denied the charges were released on conditional bail for a pre-sentence report to be completed.
They will appear at Worksop Magistrates Court on 28th May.