‘Girl gang’ attacked lone woman in Manchester like ‘pack of wild animals’

A gang of girls who attacked a lone woman in the centre of Manchester were compared to ‘a pack of wild animals’ as two of them were jailed yesterday. 

Sisters Emma Daly, 25, and Valerie Daly, 21, and Valerie’s then-girlfriend Chelsea Leary, 20, viciously set upon a woman they found talking to a friend who was sleeping rough in a tent.

The court heard how as the woman knelt down on the ground, Valerie charged at her, hit her to the back of the head and dragged her backwards by her hood before the three of them launched a ‘unprovoked’ attack.

In CCTV footage played to Manchester Crown Court, Valerie, of Harpurhey, repeatedly punched the woman in the face and dragged her to the ground, Emma ‘stamped’ on her head and body, and Leary punched her and kicked her once.

Chelsea Leary, 20, Emma Daly, 25, and Valerie Daly, 21, (pictured, left to right) were called ‘a pack of wild animals around their prey’ as they were sentenced for a brutal attack on a lone woman in Manchester

The incident, which took place at around 2am on November 20, came to a brief stop when the three girls walked away, allowing the woman to escape in the opposite direction.

‘As the footage shows, Emma Leary can then be seen running back to the scene and kicking and punching the woman again as she goes to the ground,’ prosecutor Eleanor Myres said.

‘The woman recognised one of the individuals as Emma Daly but was not able to identify the other individuals.

‘She described being too disoriented to recall exactly what happened.’

The prosecutor said the three girls were acting as a group, with the Daly sisters playing a ‘leading role’.

The woman did not seek medical attention but was left with cuts, bruising and swelling to her right eye, a black left eye, a graze to her nose and bruising to her ribs.

In a victim personal statement read to the court, the woman said: ‘I am very grateful the police arrived when they did, if they didn’t I don’t know what might have happened.

‘These people made my life hell.

All three women pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm. The Daly sisters were both jailed for 14 months, while Leary was given a suspended sentence at Manchester Crown Court

All three women pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm. The Daly sisters were both jailed for 14 months, while Leary was given a suspended sentence at Manchester Crown Court

‘I wouldn’t wish the attack on anybody else.’

Emma Daly, Valerie Daly and Chelsea Leary earlier pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

The Daly sisters were both jailed for 14 months, while Leary was given a suspended sentence. 

Emma Daly has eight previous convictions, some of which for assault and resisting arrest; her sister Valerie had two previous convictions for assault occasioning actual bodily harm and assaulting a police officer; and Leary had previous convictions for theft.

Mitigating for Emma Daly, David Bentley said: ‘Ms Daly was under the misapprehension; she was given information the complainant had bullied a family member of hers. That was coupled with the alcohol she had consumed.

‘That information was incorrect.

‘Fortunately the injuries were relatively limited in seriousness. It could have been much worse and Ms Daly knows that.

‘She suffers from PTSD, anxiety, and depression arising out of a history of abuse. She was completely intoxicated and this affected her behaviour at the time.’

He added that his client is six-and-a-half months pregnant.

Mitigating for Valerie Daly, Brendan O’Leary said: ‘She is a woman with significant personal difficulties. She was homeless herself.

‘She is an adult now and doesn’t appear to have had an opportunity to work with the probation service to try and address the matters.

‘The relationship with Chelsea Leary is over.’

Mitigating for Leary, Thomas Worsfold said: ‘This was unprovoked and unpleasant, and is a serious matter. She had a difficult upbringing too.’

Recorder Jeremy Lasker added: ‘She played the least part in this, there was one punch and one kick.’

Mr Worsfold said he would ‘respectfully agree’, adding that Leary had described her own behaviour as ‘shocking and disgusting’.

‘She is genuinely remorseful about this.’

Sentencing them, Recorder Jeremy Lasker said: ‘Your victim was a young woman, known to you and plainly someone who at least one of you bore some grudge or some other feelings that led to this assault.

‘She was, at the time of the attack, just simply kneeling down on Market Street engaging in conversation with some acquaintance of hers who was sleeping rough on the streets.

‘It was a completely unprovoked group attack upon a defenceless woman.

‘It’s really no exaggeration to say you were acting together like a pack of wild animals around their prey.’

Valerie Daly and Emma Daly were both jailed for 14 months.

Leary was handed 12 months imprisonment which was suspended for two years, a three month electronically monitored curfew between 8pm and 7am, 15 days of rehabilitation activity requirements and sessions at the Women’s Problem Solving Court. 

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