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Man jailed for life for Bury knife point robberies

|News, Violent crime

A 38-year-old man has been given a life sentence for robbing and stabbing a taxi driver in Bury in January this year. A few minutes earlier he robbed another man at knife point on the same street.

At 4am on Saturday 8 of January 2022, Richard Steven McCormack, from Bury, approached a man outside Halifax Building Society in Bury town centre. He asked him for a cigarette paper before pulling out a knife and demanding all the papers. The man fled to safety but McCormack stayed in the area.

A short while later a taxi pulled up and a paying customer got out to use the nearby Natwest cash machine. McCormack got into the taxi and sat behind the driver. He reached around the seat and held a knife to the driver's throat, threatening to kill him if he did not hand over all his money.

The taxi driver received a cut to his forehead as he tried to push the knife away from him, then was stabbed in the hand as he offered McCormack his change bag. After pressing the emergency button he fled the cab, shouting down his phone to the taxi firm asking for help. McCormack chased him and when he slipped and fell, McCormack stabbed him in the back of the head and numerous times to the face, cutting off part of his nose as he lay defenceless on the floor. McCormack then picked up the driver's phone, which was still connected to the taxi base, and walked away taking the bag of change with him.

Following a CCTV press appeal, McCormack was identified as the attacker. On 11 January Greater Manchester Police attended his home and found the taxi driver's phone and the clothes he had been wearing the night of the attack. McCormack had sneaked out of the back door, but was arrested on 15 January at an address in Manchester. 

He pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery, wounding with intent and having a bladed article in a public place at an earlier hearing. He was sentenced today (22 August 2022) to a life sentence with a minimum term of 10 years. 

In his Victim Impact Statement the taxi driver said the attack left him with serious facial injuries which will leave permanent scars. He is traumatised and fears he will be attacked again. It has cost him emotionally, mentally, physically, and financially and it has also affected his family who thought he was going to die.

Gary Logan for the CPS said: "Richard McCormack carried out two terrifying knife point robberies in a short space of time, showing he would go to any lengths to get his hands on whatever he demanded; in this case cigarette papers and a small bag of change.  

"Firstly he terrified a man in the street with a knife, he then went on to carry out a prolonged attack on a taxi driver. He did not stop when he ran away, he chased him down the street and continued a frenzied knife attack when he was on the floor and unable to defend himself, causing life changing injuries. 

"Everyone has the right to go about their daily lives without fear of being threatened with or harmed by knives. The CPS takes knife crime extremely seriously and worked together with the police to bring this offender to justice in order to protect the public from further harm at his hands."

Notes to editors

Gary Logan is a Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West

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