VIOLENT protesters have been jailed for more than 42 years for their roles in ‘unacceptable and shameful’ disorder in Newcastle.

Assistant chief constable Neil Hutchison, of Northumbria Police, has condemned the actions of those convicted for their part in the summer 2020 counter BLM protests at Grey's Monument.

Footage captured on the day showed fighting and scuffles break-out between protesters and counter-protesters, as well as missiles being thrown and smoke canisters let off.

The disorder resulted in a number of officers, police dogs and horses sustaining injuries, as well as a 17-year-old protester, who was taken to hospital with a head injury after she was struck by a bottle.


Vandals also graffitied the monument and litter was strewn around the surrounding area.

A total of 38 people were charged with violent disorder – 34 men and two women, as well as two teenagers - among them men from Hexham and Prudhoe.

A total of 20 people have since been sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court – pleading guilty to violent disorder. Between them, they were sentenced to a combined 507 months behind bars.

“The scenes we watched unfold during this protest activity were absolutely unacceptable and have no place here in our city – a place which prides itself on being friendly and hospitable", said assistant chief constable Hutchison.


“I am pleased that those convicted have been brought to justice for their shameful and violent actions.

“We understand the right to lawful protest is a key part of any democracy which the police will uphold, however we will not allow them to be used as an excuse to commit crime.

“I would like to thank the officers, volunteers and police staff, as well as our partners, who formed part of this major investigation. The convictions we have seen are a testament to their hard work and dedication and I hope these results highlight to the wider public that we will not tolerate this type of behaviour.”

A number of those charged with violent disorder are still due to appear in court at a later date. 

Craig Hornsby, of Wordsworth Close, Hexham, was jailed for 28 months and Darhys Moore, of Fern Close, Prudhoe, got 24 months imprisonment suspended for 12 months.

The court heard Hornsby threw a bottle towards the police line. He then threw a further three bottles at the police and Black Lives Matter group.

Andrew Turton, for Hornsby, said he is remorseful and didn't attend intending to cause trouble and that his main concern was to protect the Grey's Monument statue. He said throwing missiles was a reaction to items being thrown the other way.

He added that he was brought up with a military background and denies being aligned to any groups or being a member of any hate crime groups or holding racist values. He was a tenancy support officer at Derwentside Council but was sacked as a result of the offence.

Moore was seen to bend down and pick up a missile and throw it towards the police line at a time when others were behaving violently and other missiles were being thrown. He was also seen pointing and shouting towards police horses and pushing through the crowd.

Penny Hall, for Moore, said he was going to town with friends, not to take part in the protest, but accepted becoming involved.

Judge Edward Bindloss, referring to a pre-sentence report, said: "He identifies as black and is more likely to identify with the Black Lives Matter protesters had he been there for political reasons, and he didn't really know what was going on."