Thug grandad who joined angry mob outside Suites Hotel shrieked 'I've waited 20 years for this'

A thug screamed he'd "do 20 years in Walton" as he joined a violent mob intent on breaking into a hotel full of asylum seekers.

Dad-of-six Christopher Shelley, of Delfby Crescent, Kirkby, was one of around 150 people who formed a violent mob outside the Suites Hotel on the night of February 10 last year. Rioters torched a police van and hurled fireworks, rocks, and glass bottles at officers as they attempted to break up the chaos, which had been sparked by unfounded rumours about asylum seekers living at the hotel.

Shelley, 45, was caught on police bodycam shrieking an abusive tirade. In video footage played at Liverpool Crown Court today, July 11, he could be heard shouting at police: "We are going to burn that hotel to the ground, smash their f***ing heads in. My name's Chris Shelley and I don't give a f*** about any of youse. F***ing d**head, you s***house c***s.

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"Let's f***ing have it. Put your riot gear on. I've waited 20 years for this, You stinking t***s. Rapist b******s.

"The first person you grab, it's going off. You want it, let's have it. We're waiting for youse. Put your gloves on. I'll take you right out."

As officers moved in with police dogs, he continued: "See the dog, let the dog off now. Bite me once and I'll kick its f***ing head in. Let those rapist ISIS bastards out that hotel. Firebombs, I'll do 20 years in Walton, I'm not arsed."

Prosecutor Henry Riding said: "Later footage shows the police van burning to the right of the picture - Shelley is in the centre, looking at his phone. At six minutes, missiles are being thrown at police, and he can be heard shouting 'go for their legs and then their heads' and 'I'm coming back with a brick for youse'."

Shelley, who has 18 past convictions for 25 offences including dishonesty, criminal damage, assault and racially aggravated harassment, pleaded guilty to violent disorder.

He was due to be sentenced in March this year, however he fled to Spain, where he remained for three months before returning of his own accord. He was arrested at his parents’ house on July 8 on suspicion of theft, and remanded in custody awaiting sentence.

Charles Lander, defending, said Shelley had ADHD, and: "He had been taking cannabis that day. He takes a lot of cannabis to deal with his ADHD. One feature he would like the court to know he he is in fact a father of six, and a grandfather."

He added: "His father's not well. He spent a short time with them. He regrets taking flight for so long but at least authorities didn't have to spend money bringing him because because he came back voluntarily."

Sentencing, Judge Denis Watson said: “On the 10th February 2023 a large group of people began to gather at the Suites Hotel. At that time some 150 or so male asylum seekers had been given temporary accommodation at the hotel, and there had been a report that one of the males had approached a 15-year-old female and asked her for her number and a kiss.

“Without a single piece of evidence to support this, a grotesquely distorted and false narrative arose. Firstly that people housed there were sex offenders - or, in your words, ‘ISIS rapists’ - and secondly that police were protecting those sex offenders.

“There followed some four hours of widespread and serious public disorder. As protesters went through a loose cordon many began to act aggressively and violently. Chants of ‘get them out’ soon led to pushing and shoving and the police officers present were in danger of being overwhelmed by an angry, violent mob.

“One of the police vehicles became isolated and was attacked y the mob. The mob helped themselves to riot shields, helmets and personal property from the carrier. The carrier was damaged extensively and set on fire. Other police vehicles were also damaged.

“The crowd threw missiles, stones, rocks, bottles, and anything else were launched to the police lines. One defendant spoke of petrol bombs being thrown.

“Almost two hours after the carrier was set on fire there were still some small pockets of flames, and some of the mob launched fireworks at the police officers. This was sustained and extremely hostile mob violence towards asylum seekers and the police, involved petrol bombs, fireworks and other dangerous missiles. It resulted in three officers being injured.

"Parts of major roads had to be closed for several hours. There was serious disruption to the community. Only the determination and resilience of police prevented the mob from breaking the line and entering the hotel where the asylum seekers were being housed.

"The events of that evening brought shame on the town of Kirkby and on Merseyside. The violence was racially aggravated. Asylum seekers are a vulnerable group of people and are entitled to look to the courts for protection. Other violence was aimed at police, who are also entitled to rely on the courts."

He sentenced Shelley to 30 months in prison for violent disorder, with an additional two months for absconding to Spain, totalling two years and eight months imprisonment.

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