Cafe owner calls for ex-Mayor of Barnet Brian Coleman to resign over assault conviction
- Credit: Archant
A cafe owner who was assaulted by former Mayor of Camden Brian Coleman has called for him to stand down as a councillor after his conviction this morning.
Mum-of-two Helen Michael said she was delighted with the verdict after Cllr Coleman pleaded guilty to common assault.
The 50-year-old, who runs Cafe Buzz in North Finchley, said outside Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court: “I’m delighted, I think justice has been served.
“I think he’s abused and bullied his way up the political ladder for a long time and he’s picked on the wrong woman this time.”
She added: “I think he’s finished. I think he should definitely step down. He should be booted out of the council.”
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Cllr Coleman was fined £270 but the conviction will not lead to him losing his seat on Barnet Council as he did not receive a custodial sentence.
Under the council’s constitution, councillors are only disqualified if they receive a prison sentence of three or more months.
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A council spokesman said: “This was something that happened in the councillor’s private capacity. It would be inappropriate for the council to comment.”
Cllr Coleman was unavailable for comment.
The 51-year-old, of Essex Park, Finchley, performed a last-minute U-turn and pleaded guilty as his trial was due to begin this morning.
The former Conservative chairman of the London Assembly admitted assault by beating over an incident involving the cafe owner in High Road, Finchley, on September 20 last year.
A second charge of driving without due care and attention was dropped and no evidence was offered by the prosecution.
CCTV video of the assault played in court showed the cafe owner filming Cllr Coleman as he took money out of a cash point.
When the councillor saw the cafe owner he charged towards her and a scuffle ensued. She sustained wrist injuries and had to have a splint fitted, the court heard.
Describing the incident outside court, Ms Michael said: “It was really scary, the first I know he was upon me. The one thing I really remember apart from his big head was the smell. It was scary.
“I was just really scared, I was shocked. All I remember doing was trying to get him off me.”
Cllr Coleman had previously denied the charges brought against him.
He was fined £270 and will pay a total of £1,385 including the fine, £850 costs, a £15 victim surcharge, and £250 compensation.