7:00am Tuesday 12th June 2012
By Tanya O'Rourke
An 80-year-old man was robbed of his pension money by two women who “latched on” to him in a Bradford pub, a Court heard.
Margaret Stokes, 27, of Swain House Road, Five Lane Ends, Bradford, and Rachel Goudie, 24, of no fixed abode, were jailed yesterday at Bradford Crown Court, after they admitted robbing Norman Rhodes in Bradford city centre on May 2.
Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said their victim had become a “shaken, uncertain, unhappy man”.
Mr Rhodes had made conversation with the defendants and bought them two halves of lager before they asked him to sing Danny Boy for them at kareoke at the Boy and Barrel pub, prosecutor Claire Larton told the court.
She said he then went to two other pubs, accompanied by the women, but found them both closed and decided to call it a night.
As he went to his bus stop he was struck with “some force” to the back of the head, Miss Larton said.
The blow was struck with enough force to cause him to fall to the ground and down some steps, she said. While he was on the ground Goudie was said to have held him down while Stokes took his wallet from his trouser pocket.
Although dazed, he gave short chase, but the pair ran off, taking his £150 pension money from his wallet before throwing it back to him.
The court heard Mr Rhodes became anxious and the robbery had had a “massive effect” on his social activities. He no longer likes to go to the pub because he does not feel safe, he has had headaches and sleepless nights.
The court heard Stokes was in breach of a court order and the terms of a deferred sentence imposed after she committed an attempted robbery on another elderly man in December last year.
Goudie, the court heard, was sentenced to 18 months in custody after a different attempted robbery in 2008.
Both defendants were said to have been addicted to alcohol.
Sentencing the pair, Judge Durham Hall said: “You befriended an elderly gentleman, Mr Rhodes, who was doing no more than enjoying himself by a few drinks and a little bit of karaoke singing. You needed money for your alcohol addiction, you targeted him, you latched on to him and at the final stages of the day you decided to rob him of all his money, his pension. I suspect he has nothing else to live on.”
Both women were ordered to serve two years and eight months for robbery, with Stokes ordered to serve a further eight months for breaching her order.
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