Robber chased victim to his South Shields home and kicked in front door after bizarre reaction to stranger in the street

A robber chased after an innocent shopper before following him home, beating him and stealing his money after they brushed past each other in the street.

Thursday, 10th September 2020, 11:05 am
Updated Thursday, 10th September 2020, 11:06 am

The 53-year-old victim was on his way home from the shops in the Mill Dam area of South Shields on October 25 last year, when he walked past Dean Mclellan, who was under the influence of alcohol at the time.

Mclellan, 32, was already subject to a suspended prison sentence for battery and criminal damage offences when the incident took place, but had managed to remain trouble-free prior to that for 12 years.

Kevin Wardlaw, prosecuting, told Newcastle Crown Court that the alteration started as the two men were merely walking past each other.

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Dean Mclellan

Mr Wardlaw said: "As the man was walking in one direction, the defendant was coming in another direction and they came into contact in each other as much as a brushing together - it was an insignificant coming together.

"The man effectively said sorry but the defendant reacted aggressively, and became abusive towards him, telling him to come here you ******* ****.

"Despite the victim protesting any contact was an accident, the defendant continued being aggressive saying 'you see my fists they are good for fighting'.

"The complainant started running to his home address pursued by the defendant."

The court heard that the victim just manged to open and close his front door but McLellan kicked it in before starting to beat him.

Mclellan then asked his victim what he had on him and when he was told he had £100, he took it and continued the beating.

Mr Wardlaw added: "The defendant then continued to physically assault and kick the complainant although it appears this took place after the robbery.

"As a result of the robbery he received bruising to his cheek and many cuts to his hands and bruising to his leg where he was kicked."

Mclellan, of Sunderland Road, South Shields, was later arrested and admitted a count of robbery as well as breaching the suspended sentence.

In a victim statement the complainant said he felt 'powerless' when Mclellan continued to shout and swear at him, and that he feared for his life when he was unable to get away from the defendant.

It also read: "I remember rolling in a ball after being punched and kicked to the ground. The psychological impact has been far worse and has left me afraid to go outside."

Steven Reed, defending, said: "This is a peculiar offence for robbery.

"The defendant's thinking was distorted by alcohol and the recent bereavements of his father and his aunt to cancer and he was missing his children.

"At the time he was in low mood and reacting in this way isn't in keeping with him.

"He is genuinely remorseful for his actions. The fact is this is out of character."

Mr Reed told the court that despite this incident, Mclellan stayed out of trouble for 12 years between 2006 and 2018, and has always been compliant and completed any unpaid work in the past.

"This clearly shows thinking skills of the defendant and this is something probation can assist with," he added.

"He has worked his entire life and is a valuable member of society.

"He's a caring father responsible for three children."

Jailing Mclellan for 30 months Judge Edward Bindloss maintained the impacts on the victim could not be ignored - but said he wasn't going to activate the full suspended sentence.

The Judge said: "The most serious part of the injuries is the psychological impacts of the complainant who had to seek professional help afterwards.

"The location and timing of the offence on an evening in October whilst you were on a suspended sentence makes this more aggravating.

"You were on full employment at the time, and you're clearly a man able to live crime free.

"You have indicated remorse and I accept that.

"Because of the aggravating features and psychological impacts of the complainant only an immediate custodial sentence can be justified."

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