A MAN who launched an unprovoked racist and aggressive assault on a shopper has been jailed for five weeks.

Aaron Grant, of Winklebury Centre, was shopping at Lidl in Basingstoke on July 23 when he attacked Robert Bigby and called him a “n******” in front of onlookers.

The 27-year-old was arrested by police but kicked an officer’s foot after being thrown into the back of the van.

He appeared before Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court on Monday charged with racially aggravated assault and re-offending while under a suspended sentence.

The court heard how four days earlier, Grant had smashed the rear light of his mother’s car, causing £100 worth of damage to the Peugeot.

He pleaded guilty to the three offences at a previous hearing in July, but on Sunday, the day before he was due to appear at Basingstoke Magistrates Court, he stole £506 of perfume from Debenhams in Festival Place.

When PC Alison attended the scene, he said: “I don’t give a f**k, I’m going to mess about.”

Pepper spray was used to apprehend him, with prosecutor David Fossler saying that Grant was “making it more difficult for officers to do their duty”.

Appearing in court on Monday, Grant wore dark hoodie and jeans and appeared unshaven.

Flanked by a security guard, Grant pleaded guilty to two further offences.

Defending Grant, Mr Bates said his client was battling an alcohol and drug problem.

He said: “He has drinking and drug issues, that is what people who steal vast amounts of perfumes from Debenhams do.

“He is totally realistic about the fact it has to be a custodial sentence today.”

According to Mr Bates, when Grant left school he was doing well, but his company went bust, and he turned to alcohol and drugs.

“He is a pleasant person with problems,” Mr Bates continued.

“We hope that on release there will be something to work with, and with the birth of a baby there will be something to work with.”

Magistrates took into account Grant’s early guilty plea and sentenced him to a total of five weeks in prison.

The court previously heard that Grant had been convicted of two counts of battery and assaulting a police officer. He was given an eight-week suspended sentence for 12 months in November 2018.

The magistrates had decided to cut the time served for the breach of the suspended service to two weeks, as Grant had through most of the year without re-offending.

Because of the financial situation Grant was in, magistrates did not order him to pay costs or fines despite Grant’s insistence of paying compensation to his mother.

Mrs Ashton, Chair of Magistrates, told him that this should be sorted on his release from prison. She said: “It is up to you to be responsible.”

Grant will have to pay £122 victim surcharge.