Drunk yob who urinated on sleeping homeless man in street ‘for a joke’ is jailed

A drunk deliberately urinated on a sleeping homeless man in the street and said: "What are you going to do about it?”

Stephen Gibney attacked victim Richard Stanley just before 5am in Liverpool city centre.

Magistrates heard Mr Stanley was sleeping rough in when he felt wet on his face.

Jane Stacey, prosecuting, said: “He opened his eyes and saw two men both laughing and realised the defendant was urinating on his face and his coat next to him and his worldly possessions."

Miss Stacey said the victim said he was going to call the police and 32-year-old Gibney retorted: “I just took a p*** on you. What are you going to do about it?”

The prosecutor added: "The victim was shocked and people getting off a bus nearby were shouting at Gibney but a few seconds later Gibney and his companion returned and he said ‘I’ll fight you right now, what are you going to do about it? I’ll piss on you again’.”

The shocked and upset victim did not respond and the police arrived and Gibney was arrested.

When interviewed Gibney said he could not remember urinating on the man or being verbally abusive.

He said if he had done it his actions had been “disgusting", the Liverpool Echo reported.

The court heard how he became upset in interview when he realised what he had done and wanted to apologise to the complainant.

He pleaded guilty to assault by beating.

Keiran Fielding, defending, said that Gibney accepts his behaviour had been “vile" and the court heard he had a cannabis habit.

As a way to “fight his demons”, Mr Fielding told the court that Gibney took up jogging and to help him sleep.

He said: "He very seldom drinks and works caring for his brother and mother and then runs back home to tire himself out.

"That night, however, his nephew took him for night out and it was big night out and a considerable amount of drink was taken.

"But it does not excuse what happened."

The court heard Gibney had eight previous convictions however none of them of a similar nature to this incident.

Sentencing him to eight weeks in prison District Judge Wendy Lloyd said the offence involved “a deliberate act of degradation of a homeless person".

She said: “It was his home, his little pitch where he was trying to establish himself as a human being and a valuable human being just like everyone else.

"He is in no way to be looked down upon, to be judged or dealt with in any lesser way than anyone else in society.

“I do consider him to be a very vulnerable victim.

"Living on the streets makes someone vulnerable and often people have no real choice about what happens to them regarding housing and so on.

“It was very unpleasant for this gentlemen, it was his home and it was gratuitous degradation of a victim.

"This was this man’s home where he was lying with his sleeping bag getting shelter…I treat this as an attack in his home.

“He woke with urine in his face and you threatened him with violence and you carried on urinating.

"Apparently to you and your companion this was just a joke."

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