Man who was rugby tackled by a passer-by as he robbed a pensioner is jailed

26/05/2015

A 32 year old man who was rugby tackled to the ground by a passer-by after he stole a pensioner’s handbag has been jailed.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that Paul McLoughlin from Ellel Grove in Liverpool grabbed the woman's handbag as she waited at the bus stop in Prescot Road in the city on 16 April 2015.

The 83 year old woman had been to the hairdressers and had the strap of her bag across of her body when McLoughlin tried to grab it from her.

He managed to get it off her and ran off but CCTV then showed a passer-by run across the road and grab McLoughlin, forcing him to the ground.

Others passers-by also went to help and McLoughlin was held on the ground until the police arrived. A member of the public found the woman's handbag, which had been dumped on some waste land.

In a Victim Personal Statement read out to the court, the elderly lady said she'd been visiting the same hairdresser for over 40 years but had been nervous on her first visit after the robbery.

But she said in her statement: "I'm determined not to let this man win and to continue to live my life like I always did."

McLoughlin has been given a seven year sentence, four years of it to be served in prison and three years on extended licence.

If he reoffends in the extended licence period he will be liable to be recalled to prison to serve the three years, as well as any sentence he gets for the further crime.

Crown Advocate Derek Jones, who prosecuted the case for Mersey-Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service, said: "McLoughlin targeted a vulnerable old lady and obviously thought he'd get clean away with her bag.

"The passer by who stopped him in his tracks and forced him to the ground played a key part in bringing McLoughlin to justice.

"Several other members of the public did all they could too on the day to help the woman and keep McLoughlin at the scene until the police came. One person even retrieved her bag.

"This was a mean, targeted robbery of an elderly woman but the reaction of passers-by on the day really made a difference."