Search

‘Callous’ thief who left Upminster delivery driver for dead is jailed

14:08 29 January 2014

David Fletcher was critically ill in hospital

David Fletcher was critically ill in hospital

Archant

A thief who ran over a delivery driver with his own van, before wiping his fingerprints from the vehicle and leaving his victim for dead, has been jailed.

David Fletcher, from Upminster, was working in Purfleet, Essex, on July 9, when Leonard Willsher, 41, and another man, jumped into his lorry and drove off.

Mr Fletcher, 58, gave chase, clinging to the lorry’s wing-mirror, but was pushed in the face by Willsher, who was driving, and fell to the ground.

He was run over by his truck, leaving him with serious, multiple injuries.

Willsher, from The Fremnells, Basildon, was sentenced to three years and eight months at Basildon Crown Court yesterday after admitting his part in the crime.

After sentencing, Mr Fletcher’s family issued the following statement: “We would like to thank the team at Essex Police for their hard work and dedication.

“We would also like thank to all those who helped David, from the witnesses who helped care for him when he was lying injured in the road, the Essex Air Ambulance and the staff at Royal London Hospital.

“We know that without the first class care he received, David would not be with us today.

“We have drawn comfort from the fact that for every person like the defendant and his accomplice, there are countless others that have shown so much kindness and care.”

Willsher’s accessory has never been found.

Det Chief Insp Lucy Morris said: “Despite causing near-fatal injuries, Willsher did nothing to help his victim, but was observed wiping his fingerprints from the lorry before running off, leaving his victim for dead.

“However we have not closed this enquiry yet. Willsher has, so far, refused to identify the man who was with him.”

Anyone who wants to speak to DCI Morris can call Essex Police on 101 or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Willsher admitted causing grievous bodily harm, causing serious injury by dangerous driving, aggravated vehicle taking and driving whilst disqualified.

Latest Romford News Stories

Yesterday, 17:05
Leah who is part of the young people group at Havering Mind

The Recorder has launched a major mental health awareness campaign with charity Havering Mind, which will run throughout 2016. Through Mind Your Mental Health we aim to break down the stigma that persists and share advice for analysing and improving the wellbeing of our community. This week Emma Lake finds out how mentors can help young people

Yesterday, 17:00
Havering Mind's Live a better life programme, at, Harrow Lodge House, Hornchurch

Vanessa Bennett

It is estimated that in any given year 20 per cent of children will suffer from a mental health problem.

Yesterday, 14:00
The Recorder is running a competition where readers can win five family tickets to the London Aquarium

Up for grabs this week are five family tickets for one of the capital’s most popular attractions – the London Aquarium.

Yesterday, 12:01
Copper Box arena school dance championship, Abbs Cross Academy

Dancers have been celebrating walking away from a London-wide championship with two awards.

Yesterday, 07:00
Council is set to increase by 3.99 per cent

Residents face a bigger council tax bill after a 3.99 per cent increase was given approval on Wednesday.

Fri, 16:13
The team cross the finish line in Antigua. Picture: Ben Duffy

The first hurricane to hit the Atlantic in January since 1938 couldn’t stop four daredevils joining the elite group of people to row across it.

Fri, 13:09
The map shows the net increase of new businesses, which have opened in 2015 by areas. These figures take into account the number of businesses, which closed in the same year.

As new companies are launched around the borough, Romford continues to attract most of Havering’s start-up activity.

Fri, 10:21
Jon Hill outside Buckinham Palace after receiving his CBE. Photo: Jon Hill

When a loved one dies families can take comfort in having a body to bury and grieve over, but for decades the relatives of Northern Ireland’s “disappeared” have not.

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Champagne experience

This Valentine’s Day, the Coca-Cola London Eye is the perfect destination for lovebirds, offering a range of romantic experiences from Friday 12th February - Sunday 14th February 2016.

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe