Couple attacked Wakefield taxi driver when he recognised them as fare dodgers

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A couple who attacked a taxi driver weeks after they ran from his cab without paying are starting prison sentences this week.

Rose Jedynak and Ryan Padget were recognised by the driver and when he confronted them, Padget grabbed him and punched him, Leeds Crown Court was told. The drug-addicted pair, who have a long history of public nuisance crimes including shoplifting, were both given criminal behaviour orders (CBO) as well as jail sentences.

Prosecuting, James Holding said that the pair had first been in the taxi on December 12 last year on Newton Lane in Outwood, when they got out without paying the fare. Jedynak then racially abused the driver.

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On December 31, Padget walked into the Tesco Express on Leeds Road, Outwood, at around 10pm, and was instantly recognised by the member of staff as a known shoplifter. He barged the woman out of the way and picked up a £13 crate of beer before barging her out of the way again and walking out.

Finally, on January 4, the same taxi driver was called to pick the pair up. When he recognised them, he wanted money up front and the fare from the previous journey, but they turned violent. Sat behind the driver, Padget put his arm around the driver's neck and squeezed while Jedynak tried to grab his phone. Padget also punched him to the face. It was only when the panicking driver's leg hit the car horn did Padget relent.

Padget and Jedynak were both jailed for their part on an attack on a taxi driver. (pics by Wakefield Council)Padget and Jedynak were both jailed for their part on an attack on a taxi driver. (pics by Wakefield Council)
Padget and Jedynak were both jailed for their part on an attack on a taxi driver. (pics by Wakefield Council) | Wakefield Council

As they got out, 33-year-old Jedynak poured alcohol over the car seat. The driver was left in shock and had cuts to his ear. Jedynak was later picked out of an ID parade, while 42-year-old Padget was recognised by officers. The pair were arrested and interviewed. Padget gave no comments while Jedynak denied involvement, despite being told she had been positively identified.

With both being held on remand since their arrest, they admitted a charge of making off without payment from December 12, and affray from January 4. Padget admitted a charge of robbery of the Tesco store. The offences put them both in breach of a community order they received in September last year for "various thefts".

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Padget, of The Avenue, Outwood, has 68 previous convictions for 151 offences, many for theft. Mitigating on his behalf, Satpal Roth-Sharma said he had run his own fishing business at a lake but turned to drugs when his marriage broke down. She said he was doing well in prison having taken a construction course and health and safety course.

She said: "He feels good for the first time and feels healthier and cleaner. He does show regret and remorse. He realises the distress he has caused both victims."

She said he had been in a relationship with mother-of-two Jedynak for around a year and both of them had drug addictions. Jedynak, of Trilby Street, Wakefield has 12 previous convictions for 29 offences, mainly for thefts. Mitigating, Samreen Akhtar said that throughout 2023 Jedynak had been using both heroin and crack cocaine. She added: "It's not an excuse for her behaviour and she is thoroughly ashamed of her conduct."

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Judge Simon Batiste gave them both the CBO - Padget for five years, Jedynak for four - which bans them from entering certain shops.

For Padget, he said the robbery of Tesco was done with "breath-taking arrogance" and said the message "has to get out" that it will not be tolerated. He jailed him for a total of 30 months. He jailed Jedynak for 12 months.

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