Hero customer who rugby-tackled city centre Lloyds bank robber as he made gun threats awarded cash from public funds to mark his bravery

A customer who helped bring a bank robber to justice after he fought with him as he threatened staff has been awarded £500 to mark his bravery.

Wednesday, 8th September 2021, 4:45 am

A judge ordered that the man be awarded the sum from public funds after Leonardo Richmond was jailed for four years.

The 30-year-old defendant carried out robberies at Lloyds Bank branches in Bradford and Wakefield in November last year.

Kristian Cavanagh, prosecuting, said Richmond targeted the branch in Bradford on November 19.

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Bank robber Leonardo Richmond was jailed for four years at Leeds Crown Court.

A member of staff immediately became suspicious when she saw the defendant enter the premises with his face covered up.

The woman screamed, pressed the panic alarm and began to usher customers out of the branch.

Richmond approached a cashier and demanded money.

The cashier feared that Richmond had a weapon as he put his hand down the side of his trousers.

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He left after being told that the cash till was empty.

Richmond, also known as Jason Ankomah-Ampomah, targeted the Lloyds bank branch in Wakefield four days later, on November 23.

He approached a cashier and said he had a gun before demanding money.

The cashier opened the till and Richmond grabbed around £300 of bank notes and two bags of coins.

The defendant also shouted to customers: "Everyone get down, I have got a gun."

One of the customers crept up behind Richmond then punched him and held him in a bear hug.

Richmond managed to get free but the man rugby-tackled him and the pair continued to struggle.

Richmond ran off but the man grabbed a piece of fabric from his clothing.

The fabric was found to contain Richmond's DNA and he was arrested.

At the time of the offences he was out of prison on licence for an offence of possession of an imitation firearm.

Stephen Tettey, mitigating, said Richmond had not been armed with a weapon during the two offences.

Mr Tettey said his client pleaded guilty to the offences at an early stage and had issues with alcoholism and depression.

Sentencing Richmond, Recorder Richard Wright QC said: "Lots of people are depressed. Lots of people abuse alcohol.

"But they do not go out and rob banks and terrify members of the public when they do so."

Praising the customer's actions, Recorder Wright said: "In particularly frightening circumstances, he tackled this defendant, and by tackling him as he did, obtained evidence by which this defendant was identified.

"I have no doubt that he acted with great bravery and his conduct should be commended."