Two men and a woman have been jailed for a total of 11 years after they targeted a pregnant woman pushing a pram in a street robbery in Preston.Advertisement
Rachel Worthington was 20 weeks pregnant when she was punched in the face after being confronted by Phillip Kent, 41, and Roy Walker, 45, yards from her home in Savick.
She was talking to her partner William Turner on her mobile phone as she pushed her pram towards the shops in West Park Avenue, shortly after 2pm on October 20.
The men asked for directions before Kent – who spoke with a ‘Scouse’ accent – told her: “I’ve been sent.”
He grabbed the charm bracelet from her arm and snatched her mobile phone – which was still connected to a call with Mr Turner – before stealing her purse from the basket underneath the pram.
Mr Turner – who heard the robbery on the other end of the phone – ran out of his house, along with a neighbour, who had also heard the shouting.
As Miss Worthington shouted for help, Walker punched her in the face. The attackers then ran off towards a blue Peugeot car and Kent handed over the stolen items to Donna Walton, 45, – who in return handed him a dog lead she was carrying.
Kent swung the dog lead towards Mr Turner and his neighbour to prevent them coming any closer and Walton, Kent and Walker were driven away by a man – who has never been identified.
Graham Robinson, prosecuting, said: “Miss Worthington was left with a red mark and swelling to her face where she had been punched.
“Walker and Walton were identified by photographs taken on a mobile phone. Turner identified Walker with whom there had been issues previously and also purported to identify Walton.”
Walton was arrested that evening at her home in Central Drive, Blackpool. She denied being in Preston that day, however she told officers she “hated” Miss Worthington and Mr Turner and said she knew Miss Worthington was pregnant.
A dog lead and a receipt from a shop yards from the robbery were found in her home.
Walker was arrested at a probation hostel in Liverpool and also denied being at the scene of the robbery but when he learned Turner had identified him he gave no comment.
Kent was arrested in December and said he had travelled to Blackpool with Walton and Walker after meeting Walker at a hostel.
Graham Robinson, prosecuting, said: “He said Walker had discussed going to give Turner a hiding and they had been driven to Preston with a view to violence and theft from Turner.”
Kent and Turner pleaded guilty to robbery and Walton to assisting an offender.
Recorder Sally Hatfield, sentenced Kent, of East Millwood Road, Speke, for 60 months, Walton, of Central Drive, Blackpool, for 21 months and Walker, of Yewtree Avenue, Blackpool, for 52 months.