Racist thug sunk his teeth into taxi driver's face over £6.20 fare, court is told
A racist thug who strangled a taxi driver with his own seat belt before sinking his teeth into his face over a £6.20 fare has been locked up.
Jake Joseph Evans, who has a history of violence, flew into a rage with the terrified driver after he picked him up following a night of drinking, Leeds Crown Court heard this morning.
Prosecuting, Katy Varlow said that Evans, 27, had booked the cab for 11.30pm on the evening of September 8 this year.
He got into the cab from outside a pizza takeaway and was with a female who was not identified, but the driver said both were clearly intoxicated.
When the cab got to Central Drive in Castleford, the woman got out and the driver said the fare was £6.20.
Evans then threw a handful of change at the driver before launching into a verbal racist attack.
He then got out and opened the front passenger door, knelt on the seat and punched the driver in the head, grabbed his hair and punched him to the ribs.
He then grabbed the driver's seat belt, which he was still wearing, and wrapped it around the driver's neck.
Miss Varlow said he strangled the driver, who was struggling to breathe, for around 10 seconds.
Finally, he then turned the driver's face away from him and bit his cheek for between 10 and 15 seconds.
The driver eventually pushed him away and Evans launched into another verbal tirade telling the driver: "Why did you ask me for money? I'm going to find you and I will kill you."
Miss Varlow said the the taxi driver was so terrified he then drove off with the door of his taxi still open.
After the alarm was raised, Evans was found by police officers on nearby Lumley Hill a short time later, still drunk and covered in the driver's blood.
During interview he either denied the driver's claims or gave "no comment" answers.
The court heard that Evans, of Fairway Approach, Normanton, has 12 convictions, including several for violence including wounding and battery.
He was on a suspended sentence for possession of a hunting knife in public when he carried out his latest attack.
Mitigating, Laura Hebditch, said Evans had struggled since suffering a serious car crash when he was 18, and that he recognised he had a problem when he drinks alcohol.
She said: "He is horrified when he considers his behaviour and takes full responsibility.
"He simply does not recognise himself when he drinks and is disgusted with his behaviour."
He admitted a charge of racially-aggravated wounding and making off without payment.
Jailing him for 36 months, Judge Geoffrey Marson QC said: "It's wholly unacceptable to attack a taxi driver who was doing nothing more than trying to earn a decent, honest living."