First picture of teenager who threw flour and eggs at disabled woman in park

This is the first picture of the teenage thug who laughed at a disabled woman as he pelted her with flour and eggs while she sat on a park bench.

Cohan Semple was among a group of youths who launched the ‘despicable’ attack on the vulnerable woman and then posted a picture on social media.

Semple, 18, appeared in court yesterday and admitted his part in the humiliating attack in Bury St Edmunds that caused an international outcry in July.

Date: 01 NOV 2018 Location: Ipswich Youth Court. MINIMUM FEE ONLINE OR PAPER ??150.00 Cohan Semple (18) who pleaded guilty at Ipswich Youth Court to covering a woman in flour and eggs in an attack in Bury St Edmunds in July 2018. N.B: None of the other accused can be iddentified because they are under age.

Cohan Semple has been unmasked as the person who posted footage on social media of the sickening egg and flour attack on a vulnerable woman (Picture: Eastnews Press Agency)

Four other teenagers, who cannot be named for legal reasons because of their age, have also admitted their guilt.

The court heard the boys were seen laughing and smiling next to Janice Morris, 49, after they had covered her head to toe in flour.

The picture was posted on Snapchat by Semple for his group of 25 contacts to see.

The image was copied by one of his friends and ended up being posted on Facebook where it was shared tens of thousands of times, leading to outrage around the world.

Magistrates told this had added to the humiliation felt by their victim.

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The court heard the youths and their families had since faced online abuse and direct threats from people who were sickened by the picture.

One father and one teenager were even said to have had death threats.

Two of the boys aged 16, a 15-year-old and a 17-year-old each admitted using threatening or abusive words or behaviour towards Ms Morris.

Semple also pleaded guilty to using threatening, abusive and insulting words or behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress.

He was released on bail, to be sentenced at an adult court on December 4.

Prosecutor Wayne Ablett told Ipswich Youth Court that the boys approached Ms Morris as she sat on the bench beside a basketball court.

Mr Ablett said one of them spat at her about three times as the boys laughed and goaded her.

They then disappeared for ‘five to ten minutes’ and returned with flour purchased from a nearby shop.

FILE PHOTO COPYRIGHT UNKNOWN -Cohan Semple, 18 (RIGHT) whi can now be named in the story. A woman covered in flour and eggs while boys pose for a picture in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. SWCAflour -Five teenage boys have today (thu) admitted pelting a mentally-ill woman with flour as she cowered on a park bench. Cohan Semple, 18, and four other teens, who cannot be named for legal reasons, spat at 49-year-old Janice Morris before laughing as they posed for selfies with her. The images were later posted to social media, sparking a national outcry over the "despicable attack", which took place in a park in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, on July 27.

Five teenage boys appeared in court yesterday to admit the attack, which caused an international outcry in July (Picture: Facebook)

Mr Ablett continued: ‘These items were chucked at and thrown at her body, covering her completely in flour.

‘The boys were still laughing. She was spat at again and one of them had taken a photo of her.

‘She heard one of them say, “We’re filming it.”’

He added that Ms Morris was ‘shocked’ by what happened, and felt she couldn’t return to the park.

Presiding magistrate Simon Islett told the other four teenagers they could easily be facing a custodial sentence if they were a few years older and in an adult court.

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He told them: ‘This was a nasty attack on a very vulnerable lady. She must have been terrified.’

Instead as they were in a youth court, they were each given a 12 month referral order during separate hearings and ordered to pay £100 compensation to their victim, a £20 victim surcharge and £85 prosecution costs.

The 16-year-old was also fined an extra £20 after he admitted possessing cannabis when he was arrested.

A sixth defendant, aged 17, denied using threatening, abusive and insulting words or behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress, and will face trial at the youth court on February 13.

Declan Gallagher, defending Semple, said: ‘Cohan Semple took the photograph and put it on his own Snapchat.

‘One of his circle then took a screenshot of that, then it went onto Facebook, then it went beyond.

Mr Gallagher said the teenager, who was flanked by his parents in court, had been having difficulties over the last two years.

The youth was said to be vulnerable and easily exploited. The court heard he had been egged on by his peers and now felt remorse and wished it had never happened.