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Man who stole lorry and ran over driver given three years and eight months

  • 30 January 2014
  • By Chris Tindall

An “opportunist thief” who stole a lorry and then ran over the driver has been sent to prison for three years and eight months.

Leonard Willsher, 41, (pictured) was sentenced at Basildon Crown Court this week after he admitted a string off offences that left delivery driver David Fletcher fighting for his life.

Willsher and another man jumped into Fletcher’s lorry on July last year and attempted to drive off. The driver chased after them, but was pushed in the face as he clung to the vehicle’s wing mirror. He fell to the ground and then his lorry drove over him leaving him with multiple injuries.

“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,” said detective chief inspector Lucy Morris.

“Thanks to expert medical care, his own strength of character and determination to get better Mr Fletcher is recovering with the help and support of his family.”

After sentencing Fletcher’s family released a statement thanking Essex police and those that helped the driver, including witnesses.

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

However, DCI Morris added: “We know that there was a second man in the vehicle with Willsher and despite admitting these offences he has, so far, refused to identify the man who was with him.

“I would urgently appeal to anyone who may have information about Willsher’s accomplice to get in touch with me and tell me what they know.”


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