The following article was written by Anil Dawar, and was published by the Express on Saturday April 21st 2012. You can view the original article here: www.express.co.uk/posts/view/315680/Soft-justice-lets-yob-who-knifed-hero-dad-go-free
A teenage thug who stabbed a hero father protecting his son from a baying gang has walked free from court.
Local MP Jon Cruddas says father did what any normal father would have done
Despite knifing the man three times in the back, the 16-year-old was sentenced to just 60 hours community service.
The gang was trying to rob two schoolboy brothers who had just left cricket practice in Rainham, Essex.
The terrified brothers fled and phoned their father pleading with him to rescue them. When the brave 46-year-old confronted the youths he was surrounded and stabbed in the shoulder and back.
None of those involved in the case can be named for legal reasons.
Yesterday the victim’s MP hit out at the soft sentence and called for an urgent meeting with Justice Secretary Ken Clarke.
Jon Cruddas, Labour MP for Dagenham and Rainham, has been in close contact with the family since the hearing at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday.
He said: “I must admit to being shocked at the sentencing. The father did, in my eyes, what any normal father would have done – protect his family. It is what I would have done. We are fortunate that no one died that day.”
Mr Cruddas said he wants Mr Clarke to explain to the victim how his attacker escaped a prison term.
The 16-year-old, from Romford, was handed 60 hours community service, a three-month curfew and a three-year supervision order after admitting wounding with intent and affray.
Three other youths were each given 10 month referral orders after pleading guilty to affray.
Details of the soft sentence follow a Tory pledge to get tough on knife crime. Three years ago judges were given the go-ahead to lock up anyone caught carrying a blade or offensive weapon.