Brothers jailed for 'brutal' attack after review

Mugshots of Kenneth Brown and brother Shaun Brown
Kenneth Brown (left) and brother Shaun Brown saw their sentences increased [Cumbria police]

Two brothers who launched a "brutal" attack on a stranger on the street have been jailed after their initial sentence was deemed too lenient.

Kenneth Brown, 27, and Shaun Brown, 25, had initially been spared jail for the attack in Carlisle city centre, which left their victim with a broken hand, fractured nose and black eyes.

In his sentencing remarks at the initial hearing in April at Carlisle Crown Court, Recorder Julian Shaw said he was suspending the two year sentence for both men in light of their "genuine remorse" and because the country's prisons were full.

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) said it could not comment fully due to the upcoming general election, but it said sentencing decisions remained "a matter for the independent judiciary".

The initial sentence was increased, following a hearing on Thursday, to three and a half years immediate jail for attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent to do grievous bodily harm.

The fresh sentence comes after the case was referred by the solicitor general to the Unduly Lenient Sentences scheme.

The scheme allows anyone to ask for certain crown court sentences to be reviewed by the Attorney General's Office if they think the sentence is too lenient.

At the time of the initial sentencing hearing at Carlisle Crown Court, the judge heard the attack had been carried out on Lowther Street in the early hours of 30 October 2022.

The Brown brothers, both of Winmoss Drive, Liverpool, had travelled with their father, a former soldier, to attend an annual reunion for Kings Own Royal Border Regiment (KORBR) veterans.

But at about 02:00 GMT, they encountered a complete stranger in the street while chanting their allegiance to Liverpool Football Club.

He spoke of being a Manchester United fan and was then attacked by the pair with punches, kicks and stamps over the course of several minutes.

The young victim was treated in hospital that night and discharged. In an impact statement, he spoke of his career as a plasterer probably being over after cancelling an apprenticeship due to the hand injury.

During the initial sentence, the judge acknowledged the seriousness of the attack.

"It was a cowardly, brutal, sustained attack on a drunk and, ultimately, utterly defenceless young man," he said.

But after hearing mitigation, he concluded the violence was out of character for the defendants, who had no previous convictions.

Speaking on the appeal Det Con Nick Mandale said: "We welcome the revised sentences.

"Kenneth and Shaun subjected the victim to a brutal attack and now will be reflecting on their actions in prison.

"Such an attack could have killed the victim but luckily, he did not sustain more serious life-changing injuries."

The MoJ said prison population had grown "significantly" due to the impacts of the pandemic on the courts, and short-term measures had been implemented to increase capacity.

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