A judge in Brighton and Hove last week gave a 50-year-old Zimbabwean lady one final opportunity to avoid prison after she was convicted of racially insulting her neighbour.
Constance Ndawana, 50, had previously been slapped with a restraining order after attacking 49-year-old taxi driver Medhat Boktor.
Prosecutor Daniel Henderson told Lewes Crown Court that despite the restraining order, Ndawana harassed Boktor, yelling:
You’re a bloody Muslim! You’re a bloody Arab!
At an earlier hearing at Brighton Magistrates’ Court, Ndawana denied violating the restraining order and racially and religiously aggravated harassment, but was found guilty of both crimes.
According to the Brighton & Hove News, Ndawana was taken to the crown court for a punishment, where Henderson stated that she had been a nuisance to the Boktor family for some time.
He stated that Ndawana was handed a community order and a restraining order at Brighton Magistrates’ Court in October 2020 for a racially aggravated assault.
She assaulted Boktor in June 2020, flinging a cellphone and racially charged comments at him.
Henderson claimed that she had used her hose to flood her neighbor’s patio, emptied his bin, and yelled other abuses at him since then.
Boktor informed police that his family was tired of Constance’s abuse, which he said was damaging their health.
He stated that she lacked respect and added:
I have made numerous requests to the council in the hopes of getting her rehoused, but we have yet to receive an answer.
Defending attorney Sarah Seear stated that Ndawana arrived in the UK 25 years ago and has resided in the area for the past 20 years, working in catering and care homes till 2020.
Just over two years ago, the single mother got into difficulty with the authorities when she was convicted of drunk driving after flipping her car near her house on the Knoll Estate. Miss Seear stated,
She has tragically become reliant on drink to cope with life. She is concerned about both of her parents, who have undergone strokes and are currently in Zimbabwe.
According to Judge Martin Huseyin:
With your behaviour, you’re getting dangerously close to being arrested.
If you continue to behave in such a way that the court has no other option, the court will imprison you.
You have been making your neighbours’ lives difficult. You may be unhappy and in a bad circumstance – and drinking doesn’t help – and we sympathise with you, but you can’t take it out on your neighbours.
The offences are unpleasant, and their persistence generates sorrow.
Ndawana was sentenced to 36 weeks in prison, suspended for two years, and required to attend 25 rehabilitation sessions.
She was also ordered to pay Mr Boktor £200 in compensation and a victim surcharge of £156.
A new restraining order has been issued. Ndawana is barred from contacting Boktor or his wife Teriza Nashed for three years unless she attends mediation organised by her landlord, Brighton and Hove City Council.