King’s Lynn store attack jail term welcomed

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The family of an elderly woman left with serious wrist and leg injuries after she was knocked over by a thief fleeing a Lynn store has welcomed his prison sentence.

Ann Banyard and members of her family were at Norwich Crown Court to see her attacker, Alexsandrs Kukuskins, jailed for two and a half years on Thursday.

Ann Banyard with her injury, Fairstead Est, King's Lynn ANL-150904-081646009

Ann Banyard with her injury, Fairstead Est, King's Lynn ANL-150904-081646009

He is also set to be deported once he has served his sentence for actions police have described as “thoughtless” and “unforgivable.”

Kukuskins, who was arrested in Germany under a European arrest warrant having previously returned to his native Latvia, pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm to Mrs Banyard and theft at an earlier court hearing in March.

And, speaking after he was sentenced, Mrs Banyard’s daughter, Tracy Whitby, said: “She feels a lot better knowing he’s not going to be out and about any more.”

Mrs Banyard suffered a severely fractured wrist, which has not properly healed despite two operations, and a fractured knee in the incident in April last year.

She has since been prescribed with a daily dose of morphine to relieve her pain and has to use nutcrackers in order to grip items such as tins.

Ms Whitby said: “She knows it’s going to be like it now for the rest of her life and she’s got to get used to that.”

She also questioned the claims of remorse made on Kukuskins’ behalf.

She added: “She was very upset to see the size of him. It’s no wonder he knocked her flying.”

The outcome has also been welcomed by PC Ian Sloan, the Lynn-based officer who investigated the incident and was also at court to see Kukuskins sentenced.

He said: “The thoughtless actions of a thief trying to escape the scene of his crime left an elderly woman requiring serious hospital treatment and that is unforgivable.

“I am pleased with the sentence. Kukuskins has shown no remorse or humility throughout the whole process, even going to the length of trying to hide across Europe to escape his punishment.

“On this occasion we have seen first-hand that the system may take time but that it does work.

“I hope this enables the victim in this case to move on from what has been an incredibly traumatic time for her and her family.”