'Why did you do it?' - Motorcyclist's emotional question to Harborough district teenager after he was blinded in one eye by an egg attack

Marc Toone said he does not “hate” Thomas Connors after the random late-night assault left him soaked in blood - and brutally robbed of sight in his right eye

Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 6:03 pm
Updated Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 6:06 pm

A motorcyclist blinded in one eye after an egg was hurled at his face is asking a Harborough teenager jailed over the attack – why did you do it?

Marc Toone, 33, said he does not “hate” Thomas Connors, 18, after the random late-night assault left him soaked in blood - and brutally robbed of sight in his right eye.

But outraged Marc told the Harborough Mail: “I would ask him questions.

Mark Toone has been left blinded in one eye.

“I’d ask Connors – why did you do it?

“I’d tell him that an egg was going through my mind – what was going through your mind?

“I want answers to what happened to me that night because it was mad.”

The dad-of-one bravely spoke out after Connors, of Mere Lane, Bitteswell, near Lutterworth, was locked up for a year at Leicester magistrates’ court.

The teenage thug was driving a hired Seat Leon as his mates threw eggs at vehicles as they drove around Market Harborough.

The gang ended up attacking Marc as the chef biked home to Wigston after work on the night of Friday January 10, 2020.

“Why did they attack other people and why did they target me?

“It was just mad.

“It was so childish and so stupid.

“And as a result I will be blind in my right eye for the rest of my life,” said Marc, who now lives in Humberstone, Leicester.

“It’s just madness.

“There is no place in society for people who do this sort of thing.

“And I’ve no idea how a lad who was just 17 at the time was allowed to hire a high-powered car to drive his mates around in.”

Asked what he thought of Connors’ 12-month detention sentence, Marc replied: “He should have been done at Leicester Crown Court for a start, not at the magistrates’ court.

“He was the driver of the car involved in all of the egg attacks on people that night.

“The driver is responsible for all the passengers in his car.

“His punishment is a kick in the teeth.

“But it’s not my job to punish him,” insisted Marc, who has a 12-year-old son.

“But what he did to me and others will live with him for ever.

“If he goes for a job potential employers will soon be able to find out what he did that night.

“And I’d never employ someone who could do that to other human beings.

“Connors knew what he was doing – and I’ll never show him any remorse.

“He’s just got married and he’s got a baby on the way.

“Well he’d better grow up – and fast.”

In constant pain, Marc had two emergency operations on his right eye after he was seriously injured.

And he’s still having regular treatment.

“I’ll find out in May if I’ll lose my eye altogether.

“The attack turned my whole life upside down - and I’ll live with the consequences for ever.

“It’s not just about the physical damage either.

“I lost my partner as a result of the attack,” said Marc, who’s suffered severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

“My son has been bullied at school after the story came out.

“I had to have salmonella tests carried out on my eye, there was that much egg embedded in there.

“My eyeball was sliced wide open.

“I’ve suffered panic attacks ever since.

“I have regular flashbacks and nightmares.

“I’ve managed to get back on my motorbike – I need it for work after all,” said Marc.

“But I’ve been physically sick out riding and I do get very anxious.

“I was riding out with a mate last week and suddenly had to pull over.

“I just broke down in tears by the roadside.

“People don’t see that.

“They see me bubbly and laughing in the street,” said Marc.

“But they don’t see me behind closed doors.

“I’ve been having counselling.

“It’s brutal because it forces me to recall and relive that terrible night.

“It’s as if the attack is happening to me all over again.

“But I just have to get on with it – because I’ll never give up.

“I’m a proud dad.

“I want to be a role model for my son – I have to be strong for him.”

The still keen motorcyclist paid tribute to the public for getting behind him in their droves.

“I woke up today and I must have had about 500 messages wishing me well from people.

“I didn’t know there were still that many good people out there!

“It’s been brilliant,” said Marc.

“And I’d like to thank every one who’s been in touch.

“Their phenomenal support means so much to me.

“I’d also like to thank the police and NHS for looking after me too.

“I’m furloughed at the moment but I’ve still got a job at the Yews pub in Great Glen.

“The staff there have all been fantastic.

“The job’s obviously harder because I’m having to get used to looking through one eye.

“I’ve been misjudging and walking straight into doors.

“But I love working at the Yews and am looking forward to going back there.”

Marc is now gearing up to tackle an epic 3,000-mile charity motorbike ride around the UK in July.

“There’s about 18 of us and we’ll be out on the road from Land’s End in the south to John O’Groats in the north from July 12-July 24.

“I’m riding with the Riders of Charity group,” said Marc.

“We are raising money for charities supporting research into Alzheimer’s disease, the MIND mental health charity and PTSD.

“We’ve already raised about £1,000.

“To make the challenge even harder I’ll be doing it on a tiny 50cc scooter!

“I am nervous about the prospect of riding so many miles day in day out.

“But I am determined to do it with so many amazing people.

“And I’m appealing to everyone out there to please support me as much as you can.”

If you would like to back brave Marc on his mighty motorbike mission, you can visit the Riders of Charity website here: https://www.ridersofcharity.co.uk/Condemning the attack on Marc, Det Con Jack Thomas, of Leicestershire Police, said: “Ultimately an incredibly stupid and thoughtless act has led to a man suffering a life-changing injury which continues to affect him and his family.

“A number of other people were also injured as a result of this act and vehicles damaged.”

Saluting Marc, Det Con Thomas added: “Marc has been incredibly brave to share the personal impact which this incident has had on him both physically and mentally.

“And to show the full consequences an incident such as this can have on the victims involved and the devastation it can cause.

“I hope this does help to make people think twice about their actions and the damage they can cause.

“We will investigate reports of this nature made to us and will take the action required to find those responsible.”