Nurse at Queen Elizabeth Hospital racially abused by Wisbech man who had drunk more than 15 pints of beer

Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

Queen Elizabeth Hospital. - Credit: IAN BURT

A nurse was left feeling “demoralised” and “harassed” after she was racially abused by a patient from Wisbech who had drunk more than 15 pints of beer, a court heard.

Ben Pearce, 20, pleaded guilty yesterday at Kings Lynn magistrates to using threatening and racist words towards the nurse, and of assaulting a policeman called to the scene.

Giles Beaumont, prosecuting, said Pearce, who had drunk 15 pints of beer, was attending the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Kings Lynn, with an arm injury.

He said: “The nurse, who is from Zimbabwe, was with a sister trying to fit a cannula to his arm. The nurse, who had worked at the hospital for two years, was sworn at and threatened in racist terms by Pearce. And she strained her shoulder when he pulled away from her.” When police arrived, Pearce was still agitated, and kicked an officer on the shin, without causing any injuries.

In a victim statement read by Mr Beaumont, the nurse said it had “demoralised” her.

She said: “I did not expect to be treated this way. It left me feeling harassed. I had spent 45 minutes with Ben, and he was verbally abusive to me the whole time.”

In interview, Pearce, from Cherry Road, Wisbech, said he did not think his words were racist. He said he had consumed 15 pints plus several bottles of beer.

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He said he was not a racist, and worked in a factory with many “foreign” people.

Ian Graham, for Pearce, said he was at the hospital because he had been pushed though a window on a night out with friends. He had needed 10 stitches to his arm.

He said: “He’s disgusted by his behaviour. He did use the language which was mindless and bigoted nonsense. He would like to apologise through me to the court, nurse and officer. When he goes out he binge-drinks.”

Pearce was told to complete 60 hours of unpaid work and pay £100 compensation to the nurse plus costs of £85 and a £60 victim surcharge.