Fare dodger attacked Wigan railway worker when caught out

A fare dodger who attacked a railway worker after being caught without a ticket has been brought to justice.

Colin Spicer, who works as a gateline officer for Carlisle Support Services, was set upon by Michael Lucas on February 6.

Mr Spicer was left with significant injuries following the unprovoked assault at Wigan Wallgate station and needed hospital treatment. 

Chris Jackson, regional director for Northern, said: “This was a sickening attack on a member of staff who was just going about his work assisting customers.

“We will not tolerate abusive behaviour of any sort towards our colleagues and we welcome the sentence that has been passed down this week.”

Thuggish Lucas has now been locked up for more than two years.

News of the conviction follows an appeal by Northern in September for the public’s help in identifying the perpetrators of more than 70 dangerous attacks on its trains in the last year.

Since August 2021, services across the North of England were struck by 42 bricks, stones and rocks thrown from bridges and railway embankments.

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Carriages also collided with 27 substantial items, including shopping trollies, pushchairs and bikes deliberately placed on the track.

Anyone who witnesses any crime taking place on the railway should contact British Transport Police immediately by texting 61016 or by calling 0800 40 50 40. Alternatively, people can call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Adrian White, chief operating officer at Carlisle Support Services, added: “We were saddened to hear about the attack on Mr Spicer, no one should be subjected to this when going about a day’s work. Whilst recovering, Colin received full support from Carlisle Support Services and Northern.

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“As part of our commitment to ensuring staff and public safety, Carlisle Support Services will continue to provide rigorous staff training on conflict management and resolution.”

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