Have-a-go heroes praised as pensioner’s mugger jailed

A LITHUANIAN drug addict has been jailed for five years after he mugged a 69-year-old man as he lay on the ground in agony.

Raymond Womesley, on his way home after a night out watching football at a pub, suffered a dislocated shoulder when he was knocked to the ground by 33-year-old Vladimir Vysockis close to St Luke’s Hospital in Bradford.

Vysockis, who wore a balaclava, continued with the robbery despite Mr Womesley’s pain and rifled his pockets before running off with £440 in cash and a mobile phone.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday how Vysockis fled the scene after being disturbed by a passing car, but prosecutor Ewan McLachlan said the occupants of the vehicle gave chase.

Adil Yaqub, who pursued the attacker on foot, was able to retrieve the discarded balaclava which was later found to have Vysockis’s DNA on it.

The court heard that the men took the pensioner to the Bradford Royal Infirmary rather than wait for an ambulance.

Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said Mr Yaqub and his friend deserved the highest commendation.

The judge said the citizens of Bradford would be heartened by the brave and public-spirited behaviour of Mr Yaqub and his unnamed companion. Mr Yaqub will now receive a reward of £250 for his actions.

Lawyer Michael Reeves, for father-of-two Vysockis, said he had been in this country for 11 years and on the night of the attack in March he was in the grip of heroin and crack cocaine addiction. He said Vysockis apologised for his actions.

But Judge Durham Hall said the area where the attack took place was extremely well lit and Vysockis had deliberately chosen a vulnerable target.

The court heard that Vysockis had previous convictions dating back to 2006 including theft, burglary and shoplifting.

Judge Durham Hall said the robbery had taken place at night against a vulnerable victim and had involved the use of a force and a disguise.