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, 15:00
St Mary's Catholic School refurb.

Pupils at one of the borough’s largest faith schools will have been rubbing their eyes in disbelief when they returned to class this month.

Yesterday, 12:00
Adrian Baker is still touring today.

After a successful career spanning more than four decades, a chart-topping guitarist has recalled how it feels to perform in front of audiences around the world.

Yesterday, 10:00
Councillors and winners celebrate a successful London in Bloom competition.

Havering is this year’s biggest winners at the London in Bloom competition after it toppled last year’s previous record.

Fri, 16:05
Parking tickets on a car in a railway station.

Parking fines handed out to drivers in the borough have more than doubled in the space of five years.

Fri, 13:25
Ricky Hayden was killed earlier this month (Picture: Kosho Bar)

A teenager appeared in court for the first time today, charged with murdering Ricky Hayden and attempting to murder his father.

Fri, 10:54
Leader of the council Roger Ramsey

The leader of Havering Council is continuing to take the fight to the government over fairer funding, saying reduced grants have seen the authority “starved of money”.

Fri, 10:32
The Pompadours Picture: Google Maps

Firefighters were called to a derelict pub on two separate occassions last night to find different areas of the building’s first floor on fire.

Fri, 07:00
 Havering police's mental health lead officer Paul Storey.

Police are facing growing pressure to respond to people in mental health crisis. Chloe Farand 
finds out more.

Newsletter Sign Up

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

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

VW Golf Estate

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now