THREE teenage thugs have been caged after subjecting a man to a brutal beating in broad daylight - tackling him to the ground before repeatedly jumping on his head and kicking him.
Sheffield Crown Court was shown shocking CCTV footage of the vicious attack on Craig Rocket, who tried twice to stagger away before stumbling, dazed, to the ground.
Judge John Swanson called the footage "quite horrifying" - and said he had presided over murder cases in which far less violence had been used.
Mr Rocket was on his way home from an afternoon out with friends when trouble erupted outside the bus station in Rotherham town centre as he finished off a cigarette.
A gang of around five or six Asian youths started following him and threatening comments were made.
Mr Rocket became so worried he took out his mobile phone to pretend he was talking to a friend, and eventually ran off from the group in fear.
But Easem Rariq, aged 19, and Moseeb Zabear, 17, chased after him, along with another teenager, Howis Iqbal, also 17.
Rariq rugby-tackled Mr Rocket to ground before Zabear jumped on his head. Iqbal then joined in, repeatedly kicking Mr Rocket to his body.
Judge Swanson said the level of violence Mr Rocket endured was "almost unbelievable".
"I have seen a video of what happened which is quite horrifying," he
told the court. "I have known murder cases where there was considerably less violence used than in this case."
In fact, miraculously, Mr Rocket escaped with only superficial injuries from the attack on September 20 last year.
Rariq, of Boswell Street, Rotherham; Zabear, of Clough Green, Masbrough; and Iqbal, of Shawsfield Road, Broom, Rotherham, all pleaded guilty to attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent.
They claimed Mr Rocket had been making racist remarks towards them but no evidence was put before the court.
They were each sentenced to two years in a young offenders institution.
Sam Andrews, defending Zabear, said he was remorseful about what he had done and added personal and professional references showed evidence of a man "in stark contrast" to the thug seen on the CCTV footage.
Dapinder Singh, for Rariq, and Nawaz Hussain, for Iqbal, both said their clients were also remorseful for their actions.
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