Ian Collins is Leading Britain's Conversation.
2 October 2017, 17:06
Two teenagers who pelted motorway traffic with rocks and bricks from a bridge have been jailed.
Warehouse workers Jordan Arendorf and Peter Nugent hurled bricks and rubble at passing vehicles as they walked home in the morning after a shift.
They smashed several windscreens and injured one driver. A judge said that it was "only by the Grace of God" that no-one was killed.
The pair, both of Lawrence Weston, Bristol, were handed two-and-a-half years' custody after pleading to guilty to four charges of obstructing a road and a single charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
One of the men's supporters shouted: "F*** the system" as she left court.
The two 19-year-olds terrorised drivers over the course of several weeks by bombarding them with improvised missiles from Kings Weston Lane bridge, over the M49 and M5 slip road in Bristol.
Christopher and Deborah Shaw were in their Ford Escort estate, towing their £10,000 caravan to Brean for a holiday, when a flat rock smashed the front window of the caravan.
A vending machine cup - similar to those found at the teenagers' workplace - was also stuffed full of stones, gravel and brick and thrown at traffic.
Lorry driver James Armstrong had the windscreen of his 44-tonne DAF cement truck cracked, before a lump of concrete hit him in the chest.
He was admitted to hospital with severe bruising.
Three days later lorry driver Steve Morton spotted two boys on the bridge before one threw a missile and his windscreen smashed, covering him in glass.
Recorder Mr Timothy Grice said the teenagers activity was "horrifically dangerous."
"People who are involved in this and people who read about this would be absolutely horrified and find it unacceptable if the perpetrators did not face immediate prison," he said.
Initially both denied wrongdoing.
Farah Rashid, defending Nugent, said her client couldn't explain why he did what he did but had shown remorse and concern for victims.
Derek Perry, defending Arendorf, said: "Maybe their brains haven't caught up with their bodies. They did something to get a thrill without thinking about the consequences."