Great Britain

Man jailed for 'wicked' robbery of disabled pensioner

AN ADDICT who carried out a "wicked" and violent robbery on a vulnerable disabled pensioner in his own home has been jailed.

Andrew Creek, 48, of Harewood Rise, Keighley, visited the disabled 78-year-old in his flat and drank a can of his lager, before punching him in the face and ripping his jacket in an effort to forcibly take his wallet and the £300 in cash inside it.

Bradford Crown Court heard the pensioner had been left afraid to stay in his home alone and had resorted to sleeping on the sofa as he was scared someone would break into the property.

Creek, who called the man a friend at the time of the attack, was jailed for 31 months, with Judge Jonathan Rose branding the robbery a "wicked" incident.

Prosecutor Paul Nicholson told the court that at around 4pm on May 29 last year, the victim, who had lived at Central Avenue in Keighley, let Creek into his home.

Creek asked him for a can of lager, as there was one out on the table, sat down and went on to fall asleep on the sofa.

After waking up in around ten minutes, he went on to demand cash, punching the 78-year-old in the face and ripping his jacket as he grabbed his wallet.

Carers arriving at the door to the flat heard the victim shouting, "Get off me" and described him as looking "very shaken".

Mr Nicholson described how one of the carers also heard Creek shout: "I haven't done anything" repeating, "I haven't got his money" as he ran off.

The victim told the carers: "He's taken my money. Stop him."

He was left with a red left cheek and a bruise where Creek grabbed his hand.

In a statement read out to the court, the victim described how he was vulnerable due to his bad legs which meant he couldn't really walk - and therefore could not run away from Creek.

After the attack, he felt "very unsafe" in his own home and was only able to feel safe once again after moving to a new flat.

He added that he had been so scared afterwards that he had removed a key he left in a safe at the front door so carers could access his flat on their twice daily visits.

But this had inevitably caused problems as the carers could then not get in to help him.

Creek, who had an addiction to alcohol and drugs, had 54 previous convictions for a total of 102 offences, dating from 1988 to 2017, the court also heard.

Creek's solicitor advocate, Amarpal Singh, told the court that the defendant had regularly visited the complainant's home and had a drink with him.

In this instance, he had asked for money, which was refused and instead decided to take it by force.

He detailed how his "troubling" record contained a number of low level shoplifting offences to fund his drug habit, but there were no previous offences of robbery.

There had been previous offences of violence, he admitted, adding of the attack in May: "He is remorseful."

He also added that the victim was already in the process of moving home before this incident, and had not been forced to move as a result of the robbery.

When sentencing, Judge Rose told Creek: "Over the years you have been blighted by an addiction to alcohol and the misuse of drugs.

He added of the circumstances surrounding the robbery: "When you had enjoyed his hospitality you then carried out this really rather wicked attack against a man you claimed to be a friend."

"You decided that you wanted his money to use yourself for drink and drugs and when you could not get it easily from him you used violence."

He added: "His injuries were not of the most seriousness, but injured he certainly was."

The judge concluded by telling Creek: "The hope is that when you come out of this sentence you can commit yourself to abandon the misuse of alcohol."

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