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Tattooed man jailed after bus threat

PUBLISHED: 14:20 08 June 2002 | UPDATED: 12:04 03 March 2010

A TATTOOED man who indecently assaulted a Suffolk teenager and threatened a bus driver with a gun, has been jailed.

Nigel Clack, 41, of Wayland Road, Witnesham, has been jailed for a total of 10 months following his alcohol induced offending.

A TATTOOED man who indecently assaulted a Suffolk teenager and threatened a bus driver with a gun, has been jailed.

Nigel Clack, 41, of Wayland Road, Witnesham, has been jailed for a total of 10 months following his alcohol induced offending.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that on September 26 last year Clack, whose face is covered with tattoos, got on the Debenham to Ipswich bus in Witnesham and asked the driver to take him to Ipswich Hospital.

When the driver refused because Clack had been banned from travelling on the local bus service, the alcoholic produced a toy gun and threatened the driver.

Hugh Vass, prosecuting, said: "The gun clicked and he said 'I will kill you, I will get you'. The driver was shocked and upset."

Clack pleaded guilty to causing an affray.

On November 19 while Clack was still on bail, he indecently assaulted a 15-year-old girl the court heard.

Clack, also a methadone addict, had a conversation with the girl which resulted in him "kissing and cuddling" her in a bus shelter.

The court heard that Clack was intoxicated and believed she was over 16 and consenting and was flattered by her attention. Clack was found guilty of indecent assault, by a jury.

Di Middleton, mitigating for Clack, said: "There was no intimate touching, or touching under clothes. The most aggravating feature was that she had to come to court to give evidence."

She said that Clack, who has a previous record for shoplifting and public order offences, had not gone out to deliberately hurt anyone. She said the gun incident had been a joke which went terribly wrong, and indecent assault had been a misunderstanding.

Judge Nicholas Beddard sentenced Clack to six months for affray and another four months for indecent assault.

Clack was led from the dock to the cells below shouting a string of abuse.

He told the Star in September 2000, that he covered his face with tattoos including the words "Shame on me" on his forehead in a bid to steer clear of crime and save his life.

Jobless Nigel took the drastic measure after a doctor told him he had only six months to live because of his heavy drinking and addiction to tranquillisers.

He decided the only way of giving up his bad habits was to get his face tattooed so people would always be able to recognise him if he went shoplifting or misbehaved.

Nigel said: "It finally sunk home what I was doing to myself when I was told I had only months to live after 20 years of abusing my body. I realised I had to get my life back together and thought the best way was to make myself stick out like a sore thumb with tattoos on my face.

"I figured out it meant I would be arrested immediately if I committed a crime because witnesses would describe me as the man with the tattooed face and the police would know it was me."

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