Men jailed for gunpoint robbery are branded 'monsters' by victims (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
Men jailed for gunpoint robbery are branded 'monsters' by victims
8:00am Friday 18th January 2013 in News
A couple who were robbed at gunpoint in front of their children on Christmas Day at their Bradford home have said they will never recover from their ordeal.
Distraught Gemma Raistrick, 24, today branded armed robbers Lee and Martin Kelly “monsters”.
Gemma and husband Gary, 27, were enjoying Christmas with their children – Reece, seven, Luke, four, and Heidi, 13 months – at their home in Kilnsea Mount, Holme Wood, when the two men, who are cousins, burst in. One was armed with a sawn-off shotgun and the other with a hammer.
During the terrifying ordeal, the shotgun was pointed at Mr Raistrick’s head as his wife tried to protect their children.
Mrs Raistrick said: “Gary and I were watching TV and the children were playing with their toys when the two men, with their hoods up, entered the house.
“They put the gun to Gary’s head and shouted for his car keys. I picked up the baby because the other man was waving the hammer above her head and I put the kids behind me on the sofa.
“They put the gun to Gary’s face and threatened to shoot him and were moving it from his knee to his head.
“They took the keys from out of the front door and threatened to come back and shoot him, before leaving.
“They took off in our blue Ford Focus and we locked the door and called the police.”
The car was found later, but had been written off.
Mrs Raistrick said the robbery had had a devastating effect.
She said: “I am not the same person. Reece is having to go to the doctor’s because he is having nightmares.I couldn’t face going to court.
“It was unreal, like something from a horror movie. You don’t expect it to happen to you, especially by someone from the same estate.
“We’ll never get over this. They have ruined our lives forever. They are monsters.
“Who goes into a family home where there are children and threatens to shoot their dad in front of them?
“We can’t face going back to the house at the moment. It’s too scary. We are staying with our family.”
Detective Inspector George Bardell, of Bradford South Police, said after the case: “This was an extremely traumatic experience for the family who had been celebrating Christmas together in their home.
“The time of year clearly had no resonance with these men, who used intimidation and a very real threat of violence to get what they wanted.
“The use of a firearm underlined their intent and the potential danger they posed.
“Officers undertook a thorough investigation which quickly identified those responsible and brought them before the courts in a matter of weeks.
“This is the outcome which people can expect if they mix weapons with crime. You will be caught and will face significant consequences.”
Lee Kelly, 26, of Hartland Road, Holme Wood, pleaded guilty at Bradford Crown Court to robbery, having a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence, and theft of a vehicle. He was jailed for ten years by Judge Roger Thomas QC.
Martin Kelly, also 26, of Murdstone Close, West Bowling, admitted robbery, having an offensive weapon and theft of a vehicle. He was jailed for eight and a half years.