The Bath Chronicle and Metro report on the alleged racist assault of a woman who was punched in the face by bus passengers whom she confronted after hearing them espouse Islamophobic views.
Kerry Parkinson was riding on a bus on her way home on Tuesday 5 July when a couple on board began making Islamophobic comments. Parkinson said the couple, who were travelling with a young child, were being “slightly verbal with the little boy”.
Ms Parkinson told the Bath Chronicle that the male allegedly told the little boy, “you need to shut up otherwise we will send you to Istanbul with all the other Muslims to join ISIS”.
The comment was followed by one by his partner who said she had to wait a long time for a lift in Primark because “Muslims kept hitting the button.”‘
Ms Parkinson, whose brother is married to a Turkish woman, said she spoke up to ask the couple not to utter such racist comments. She addressed the couple and said, “Excuse me, please would you mind not saying that because I find it really offensive.”
Ms Parkinson claims the woman rounded on her saying “What do you know? What do you know?” and “elbowed” her. As the couple rose to leave the bus, Parkinson said the woman “hit me in the face, catching me with the base of her palm.”
Ms Parkinson told the local paper that the other passengers intervened after she was hit and praised her for standing up to racists.
Ms Parkinson said she had reported the incident to the police adding, “It seems across the country on the news there are many, many causes of racially motivated hatred and assaults on people, be it verbally or physically. But I never expected that to happen on my bus home in Bath after work.”
Avon and Somerset police have released a description of the woman wanted in connection with the incident describing her as “a white woman in her early 20s, slim, with brown hair in a ponytail and wearing a blue hoodie, black bottoms and white trainers.”
Anyone who can help can get in touch through the police website, www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/contact, or by calling 101, quoting reference 5216147464.
Alternatively, individuals can ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111