Two robbers given lengthy sentences for 'vicious' robbery of former Whitby Hotel manager

Two robbers have received lengthy jail sentences after a man had a pint glass smashed in his face during a “vicious” robbery.

By Court Reporter
Tuesday, 19th November 2019, 1:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 20th November 2019, 8:54 am

Joshua Kilpatrick, 29, and Leon Didelot, 21, were jailed for six years and four-and-a-half years respectively for the shocking attack in Whitby town centre.

The “friendly” victim - a former hotel manager - was glassed, floored with a punch and then kicked to the head and body during his terrible ordeal on Wellington Road in the early hours of November 3 last year, York Crown Court heard.

Earlier in the evening he had been “befriended” by Kilpatrick and Didelot at nearby JK’s nightclub and invited to a house party.

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Left: Joshua Kilpatrick. Right: Leon Didelot. Pictures from North Yorkshire Police

But on the way to the ‘party’ - which was just a ruse to get the victim on his own in the street - the wicked pair pounced on him as he withdrew £100 from a cashpoint.

Kilpatrick smashed a glass into the victim’s face and floored him with a punch. Didelot, high on drink and drugs, kicked him while he was lying defenceless on the ground, said prosecutor Shaun Dryden.

The bloodied, traumatised victim, who was “new in town”, then had his pockets picked. His wallet, cash, tobacco and a lighter were stolen.

Fitzpatrick demanded the PIN number for his bank card and, after taking the cash, both men taunted him by shouting: “Is that all you’ve got?”

The victim suffered cuts and bruises to his face, injuries to his lip, bruising to his leg and scrapes to his elbow, as well as a displaced or “deformed” nose.

Police and an ambulance crew arrived, by which time Didelot and Kilpatrick had scarpered with the victim’s cash, sharing it between themselves.

They were arrested shortly afterwards, but both denied robbery despite the fact that the victim’s blood stains were found on their shoes and the bank notes they had stolen.

Didelot and Kilpatrick sought to blame each other, but a jury found them both guilty following a trial last month.

The court heard that the victim was in a “terrible state and so frightened… he thought he was going to die”.

Didelot and Kilpatrick appeared for sentence via video link on Monday after being remanded in custody following the jury’s unanimous guilty verdicts.

Kilpatrick admitted two further offences of criminal damage relating to an unseemly incident following his arrest in which he urinated in the back of a police vehicle and then did the same in a cell at Scarborough Police Station. The cell had to be deep-cleaned and decontaminated.

Kilpatrick, of Love Lane, Whitby, had previous convictions for violence dating back to his youth.

His criminal record included 12 convictions for offences including assault occasioning actual bodily harm, assaulting police officers and racially-aggravated public disorder.

In August 2017, he was jailed for 16 weeks for assaulting his landlord who wanted him out of his property.

Didelot, of Laburnum Grove, Whitby, had just a few convictions for possessing cannabis and driving offences.

The victim said he had suffered not just from the physical scars but also psychologically. He had had to leave his job as a manager of a hotel in Whitby and lost his free accommodation there.

He had had to leave Whitby and moved back in with his mother. He had been taking anti-depressants and getting flashbacks from the robbery “several times a day”. He had also been seeing a counsellor.

Martin Robertshaw, for Kilpatrick, said his client had a drink problem.

Victoria Smithswain, for Didelot, said her client had fallen into the wrong crowd.

“Drug use has been a problem for him for a number of years,” she added. “He has taken cannabis and cocaine since he was 15.”

She said Didelot now felt “palpable shame” for the wicked attack which had “devastated” his devoted, “respectable family… who were deeply ashamed of his behaviour”.

Judge Sean Morris said it was evident that the victim had been “lured” to a cash point before the attack, which left him “battered, bruised, bleeding and dazed”.

Kilpatrick will serve half of his six-year sentence behind bars before being released on prison licence.

Didelot will also be released halfway through his four-and-a-half year sentence.