A woman who assaulted a woman in a wheelchair in Kingston has been sentenced.

Natalie Melin, 30, verbally abused and pushed the victim, who cannot move her arms or legs and uses an electric wheelchair, on August 2, 2017.

She did so after being challenged about leaving her car in the victim’s disabled parking space.

The victim’s carer gave evidence at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court on January 29 that Melin pushed the victim’s head away from the controls of her wheelchair during the argument.

Melin, of Southsea Road in Kingston, denied one count of common assault but was found guilty.

She was sentenced at the same court on February 5, to an 80-hour community sentence – increased from 60 hours due to it having been a hate crime.

Crimes motivated wholly or partly by hostility, or demonstrate hostility, towards the victim based on that person’s presumed race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or disability are eligible for an increased sentence.

Kris Venkatasami, deputy chief crown prosecutor for CPS London South, said: “During this aggressive attack Natalie Melin showed clear hostility towards her victim based on her disability and caused her considerable fear.

“Where a hate crime has been committed the CPS will ask the court to apply the law and give an ‘uplifted’ sentence which properly fully reflects the full nature of the crime.

"I hope this prosecution empowers other victims of hate crimes to come forward and ultimately stop others from also being subjected to vile treatment.”