1. ITV Report

Man loses appeal to cut sentence after wearing T-shirt which mocked police deaths

Offensive t-shirt Photo: GMP

A man who wore an anti-police T-shirt in public just hours after the killing of two policewomen in Greater Manchester has lost an appeal against his sentence.

Barry Thew, 39, was seen in his home town of Radcliffe wearing a T-shirt which carried hand-written comments of "One less pig; perfect justice" and " haha".

Less than three and a half hours earlier, Pcs Nicola Hughes, 23, and Fiona Bone, 32, had been shot dead in a gun and grenade attack as they responded to a reported burglary on the Hattersley estate in Mottram.

Thew, of Wolsey Street, pleaded guilty at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court to the public order offence.

On October 11 he was sentenced to four months in jail and received an additional four months after he admitted breaching the terms of a previous suspended jail term.

Barry Thew

The Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Fulford and Mr Justice Bean, at the Court of Appeal in London, said the eight-month term was not "arguably excessive".

He said that the day of the murders was a dreadful one in Manchester and Thew, who openly admitted hating the police as he held them responsible for the death of his son, committed the offence in a highly charged environment.

"Our judgment is that this, of its kind, was a most serious offence. It sent out the sort of message just at the time, and in just the place, where it constituted a true risk to the peace of the streets.

"It would have taken very little on that day at that time for violence to erupt against those - or as a result of seeing those - who appeared to condone, if not glory, in the fact that those police officers had been killed.

"The judge in Manchester would have had very clear understanding and insight into local feelings at the time this offence occurred, and he took account of the risk of a violent response to what would have been seen, not just as an offensive message, but a provocative message intended to cause alarm and distress."