Racist Firebomber Caught After Bragging On Facebook
A hate filled firebomber led cops to his door after boasting of his attack on Facebook.
Tomis Mankos could have killed a young Jewish family when he hurled a firework though their bedroom window.
Gershon Miller’s 11-year-old daughter fled when Mankos threw the lit explosive into their home in Bensham, Gateshead. But after Mankos bragged about the attack on Facebook, he was caught by police.
Newcastle Crown Court heard how the firework could have caused “serious consequences” in the racially-motivated attack.
The court was told Mr Miller, a dad-of-eight, heard a “loud explosion” from a bedroom of his home at around 9pm on November 1 last year.
The firework burned a hole in the mattress on a bed beneath the window. There was also a strong smell of gunpowder in the room.
He reported the matter to the police, but it was only when officers found conversations referring to the attacks on the social networking site that they arrested Mankos, 19, and three others.
Mankos pleaded guilty to causing racially-aggravated criminal damage.
After the hearing Mr Miller, 41, who lives with wife Naomi, 39, and their children, said the prank could have been fatal.
“It was a full-size firework,” he said. “It landed on a child’s bed and burned right through it. If any of the children were in that bed, it could have been very serious. It was very frightening.”
Mankos, of Fosse Terrace, Sheriff Hill, Gateshead, denied the attack at first but eventually admitted he had thrown the lit firecracker after being handed it by a younger lad.
The trainee painter and decorator admitted he and his pals targeted the house because they knew a Jewish family lived there.
“This has been described as an immature prank,” his defence counsel told the court. “This young man, who turned 19 this week, is someone who does not consider the long term consequences of his actions. He needs some assistance in growing up, essentially. He struggles to explain why he did it.”
Recorder Neil Davey QC sentenced Mankos to six months in jail, suspended for 12 months, with 12 months supervision. He also ordered him to complete 50 hours of unpaid work.
The judge told Mankos: “This is serious, even if it seemed like a prank to you at the time. It could have caused a huge amount of damage. It could have caused much more serious consequences in terms of the lives of the family inside the house.
“Mercifully, it did not, but that was only by good luck.”