Leeds martial art teenager’s grandma attack

Leon McLean.
Leon McLean.
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A teenager knocked his diabetic grandmother unconscious with a martial arts move before robbing her of £8,000 and locking her in a cupboard.

Leon McLean, 18, performed the ‘choke’ move on Kathleen Owens, 65, after learning it in a self defence class.

McLean, who was jailed for five years yesterday, attacked her in their home in Gildersome, Leeds, after she told him he had to move out.

A court heard the teenager flew into a temper after Mrs Owens told McLean he was going to live with his mother in Lincoln as she was moving to Carlisle to be with her new boyfriend.

Phillip Adams, prosecuting, said Mrs Owens became angry with McLean as he was refusing to leave the house.

During the argument McLean grabbed her from behind and used his arms to choke her, starving her brain of oxygen.

Mr Adams said: “She recalls thinking that she was about to die before she went into unconsciousness.”

Mrs Owens awoke but McLean then forced his fist into her throat to make her lose consciousness again.

He took £8,000 in cash from her jacket before dragging her into a boiler cupboard and locking the door. He then went to Lincoln as she lay unconscious for around hour.

Neighbours then heard her screams and raised the alarm. Police found her crying and trembling, with bruises to her face and body.

McLean was arrested the next morning at his mother’s home and still had the cash. He admitted to police what he had done, saying he felt jealous that his grandmother was moving away.

Mr Adams said: “He said that it was because she had treated him and his mother and sister like rubbish.” The barrister added: “He said that his grandmother could be a domineering character.”

McLean, of King George Road, Horsforth, pleaded guilty to robbery.

Kate Batty, for McLean said: “The court doesn’t see this degree of offending very often.”

She said the offence had a complex background as McLean had only been living with his grandmother for a month after being in care since he was 12 years old.

He had only seen his mother on two occasions during that time and was anxious about being made to move their and losing the stability of his grandmother’s home.

Mrs Batty said the teenager lost his temper after his grandmother had shouted and swore at him and repeatedly told him to get out of the house.

She said McLean had not attempted to spend the money. Robbery was not the main motive for the attack but to punish her for the way she had treated him.

Jailing him, judge Penelope Belcher said: “This is plainly a significant offence. It is very fortunate that your grandmother did not suffer more serious injuries as you could have killed her.”

She added: “It is plain from what I have read about you that you are a bright young man with ability. I hope that you can in time live the law abiding life that you are clearly capable of leading.”

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