An addict who repeatedly “kicked” a vulnerable retiree in the face abused him to finance his drug addiction.
Kieron Gill had taken over the apartment of his victim, David Bell, along with other crack users, leaving him huddled under a blanket at the Anfield address.
The defendant admitted to robbing Mr. Bell, who is in his 70s, just before Christmas last year.
Upon his arrest, he revealed his tyranny extended to taking the old man to an ATM, reports the Liverpool Echo.
Chris Hopkins, the prosecutor, explained to Liverpool Crown Court: “Mr Bell now lives in a nursing home, but at the time of this crime he was living in an apartment in Richmond Court. It’s obvious that Mr. Bell was vulnerable. His apartment appears to have been frequented by drug users and drinkers, including this defendant.”
On Sunday 20 December, a series of 999 calls were made to Merseyside Police, including Gill’s, reporting that Mr Bell was being attacked by two men. Bell also reported an attack on police in a conversation that Hopkins said appeared to be “guided” by Gill.
When officers attended, they arrested Gill and two others.
Mr. Hopkins told the court: “They [the other two suspects] both said the defendant was abusing Mr. Bell and demanding money from him. They said the defendant kicked Mr. Bell, possibly with a stamp-like kick.”
One said that Mr. Bell gave Gill some money and that Gill later said, “I told you I’d have some.”
Bell did not file a complaint or provide his details to police, leading the court to be told he was simply believed to be around 75 years old at the time of the assault.
But while in custody, Gill told officers: “I want to confess to something, I hit him, yes.”
Gill said he had extracted hundreds of pounds from his victim and claimed that on one occasion he took him to a Post Office ATM on Breck Road. No evidence could be found to substantiate that claim.
The 31-year-old, who is already in prison for other crimes that were not detailed in court, admitted that he “kicked” Mr. Bell in the face four or five times.
Hopkins said an examination of Mr. Bell found he had broken ribs, leaving his collarbone and bruises on his face. However, investigators could not conclusively attribute all of the injuries to Gill’s attack, so he was prosecuted solely for the kicks to the head.
The court heard that Gill had 10 convictions for 25 crimes, including assault.
Martin Walsh, defending, said: “Mr. Gill was a man who was effectively obsessed with crack cocaine and alcohol. He tells me that he was almost insane during this period. He accepts responsibility for what he did.”
Judge Anil Murray told Gill: “You and others who went there to drink and take drugs abused Mr. Bell’s hospitality.”
He accepted that the defendant had shown remorse and sentenced him to five years and three months in prison.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.