A HALESOWEN father and son who left a taxi driver battered and bruised after he was racially abused have both avoided spending time behind bars.

Driver Tanvir Dan was chased and brutally kicked after fearing the pair were going to leave his cab without paying their fare, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

He had picked up the two men – both named Jason Deathridge – together with three women at the Hasbury Conservative Club, said Sati Ruck, prosecuting.

Two of the females were schoolgirls and the cab went to the club at the request of another woman who had been picked up in Brierley Hill.

But on the way to Blackheath, said Mrs Ruck, the driver heard a conversation that indicated they were not going to come up with the money to pay their fare.

He then drove to the BP station in Stourbridge Road which had good lighting and CCTV and the cab remained parked on the site for around six minutes.

Mrs Ruck said another taxi driver then stopped to engage Mr Dan in conversation before his passengers started getting out of the cab.

The younger Deathridge who, like his father appeared to have downed alcohol, then racially abused Mr Dan before chasing him and knocking him to the ground.

The driver was then kicked several times suffering bruising to his face, back and shoulder as the 48-year-old father joined in and he ended up on top of Mr Dan.

A number of other people on the site ran to the driver's assistance and the violence was brought to an end, added Mrs Ruck.

She said Jason Deathridge senior accepted his son had been shouting racial abuse at Mr Dan and he had then joined in what followed.

The father and son, of Roundhills Road, both admitted racially aggravated assault. Deathridge senior was given an 18 month jail term, suspended for 18 months, and told to carry out 180 hours unpaid work in the community.

The 23-year-old son was given a 16 month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, and told he must carry out 150 hours unpaid work.

Deathridge senior was further told he must pay £300 compensation to Mr Dan for his injuries while his son must pay £200 compensation.

Anthony Carlin, defending the son – a man of previous good character – told the court he was thoroughly ashamed of his actions that evening.

Tom Kenning, defending the father, maintained two of the female passengers suffered panic attacks after being locked into the cab and that had sparked off the incident.