Jail for three of six teenagers who chased victim into Northampton McDonald's in brutal knife attack
"It was blatantly a terrifying ordeal, not only for the two young victims but those who were witnesses"
Three of the six teenagers behind a shocking knife attack at a Northampton town centre McDonald's last year have been locked up for a total of 11 years.
Terrified customers fled from the McDonald's restaurant on the Drapery in October when an savage and "unprovoked" attack by six young men on two other teenagers broke out.
CCTV showed how the gang of youths chased their targets into the fast food chain's dining area and forced one of them to the floor.
Three of the attackers - who were jailed yesterday, and cannot be named due to their age - then slashed and stabbed at their victim with machetes and knives in a brutal assault.
Even when the bleeding teenager fled into the restaurant's kitchen he was chased and stabbed, before the gang of six retreated.
Footage played at Northampton Crown Court yesterday (February 5) showed diners scrambling to get away from the fight. Parents carried their children out in their arms. Chairs were thrown over and one of the six men was seen shoving a pram out his way.
"The restaurant was full of customers - adults, children and babies," said Prosecutor Andrew Peet.
"All of them were affected by what went on, either having to move, feeling terrified, and indeed one witness feared great injury to her baby.
"It was blatantly a terrifying ordeal, not only for the two young victims but those who were witnesses."
Six young men took part in the attack. CCTV showed how the group were outside the restaurant when they saw the two victims approach.
But in a sudden shift of tone, moments later all six spread out around the two young men to block their escape.
One of the 17-year-olds then lashed out and punched both of them. Meanwhile, the 16-year-old quietly produced a knife from his backpack and handed it to his co-defendant.
Once they chased their target inside and surrounded him, they threw him to the floor. The three jailed yesterday each began stabbing at the victim with their own knives they had carried into town.
A fourth youth has also been charged and has reportedly pleaded guilty. The two other unidentified males are at large.
While one of the two targets escaped, the victim of the stabbings suffered eight wounds, including a deep gash to his wrist that exposed his tendons.
Her Honour Judge Rebecca Crane praised the staff at McDonald's who supported the victim, who not only helped the first teenager escape safely but provided first aid to the stabbing victim until police arrived.
Two for the attackers - both 17-year-olds from Northampton - were arrested at their homes seven hours later.
The third attacker - a 16-year-old also from Northampton - was arrested at the town's Premier Inn hotel soon after. A Machete was found under his room's mattress.
All three alter pleaded guilty to wounding with intent. Their defence teams said all three were "deeply ashamed" and wanted to "turn their backs on offending".
Both 17-year-olds had reportedly also not missed an optional class since they were remanded into custody in a complimentary pre-sentence report by the youth offending service.
But Her Honour Judge Crane could not spare anyone from prison.
"This incident was truly terrifying," she told the three in sentencing. "[The victim] was chased and stabbed even as he tried to get away.
"It's incredibly fortunate that the consequences were not more severe.
"You all have loving families who support you. There is potential here for change and rehabilitation."
Both of the 17-year-olds were jailed for four years, half of which they will serve on license. The 16-year-old was handed three years and two months in prison.