Sadistic murderer who smiled and took 'perverted pleasure' when he drove over his victim in Headingley is locked up for 28 years

A murderer who smiled and took a 'perverted sense of pleasure' as he drove over a man as he lay injured on a pavement has been told he must serve at least 28 years in prison.

Friday, 23rd April 2021, 4:45 pm
Updated Friday, 23rd April 2021, 4:46 pm

Mohammed Fike Butt was given a life sentence today (April 23) for murdering Jason Llanwarne and injuring two men by driving at them in his car in Headingley.

Butt mounted the pavement and drove at the men three times during the sickening attack on North Lane on September 14 last year.

Sentencing 32-year-old Butt, Mr Justice Jacobs said: "It was an act of savagery which showed no mercy."

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Mohammed Fike Butt was given a life sentence and told he must serve a minimum of 28 years in prison.

Butt pleaded guilty to murdering 32-year-old Mr Llanwarne and two counts of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent to Dean Ward and Scott Chalders part way through his trial last month.

Jurors at Leeds Crown Court heard how he drove over Mr Llanwarne's body after deliberately knocking him down.

Butt then went to a takeaway and ordered himself a portion of cheesy chips moments after causing the fatal injuries.

The court heard Butt carried out the attack to teach the three men "a lesson" during a dispute over drugs.

Crime scene on North Lane, Headingley, following the death of Jason Llanwarne in September 2020.

Harrowing CCTV footage of the attack, in which Butt used his car "as a weapon", was played in court.

Butt first drove his car at Mr Chalders and Mr Ward, causing injuries to Mr Chalder's leg.

The defendant's Mazda then re-joined the carriageway before turning around, mounting the pavement again and driving at all three men.

Mr Llanwarne was struck and carried on the bonnet before falling to the floor.

Butt turned the vehicle around and drove at the men a third time despite his windscreen being smashed.

A wheel was deliberately driven over Mr Llanwarne while his friends were trying to pull his body out of the way.

Butt, of Cross Flatts Avenue, Beeston, abandoned his car behind a nearby takeaway and called a taxi.

At today's sentencing hearing, prosecutor Stephen Wood QC said: "There is evidence that that murder involved sadistic conduct.

"In summary, this behaviour by the defendant amounts to nothing short of gratuitous serious violence for the sake of it.

"There is compelling evidence of the defendant laughing at the time.

"He was seemingly taking some sort of perverted sense of pleasure in what he was doing."

Mr Wood read a victim statement to the court on behalf of Mr Llanwarne's father.

He said: "It is traumatic enough to have to come to terms with being told that your son has been murdered.

"But then to have to sit and listen to not one but several witnesses describe how Jason was run over and parked on is unbelievable.

"It is hard not to feel anger. I felt pain, I felt anger but most of all I felt numb.

"The savagery of the attack was quite clear and once again the pain and the anger returned.

"I felt that I should have been there to share his last moments with him.

"It should have been my arms around him, not somebody else's.

"I find it hard to express these emotions.

"From the witness accounts and CCTV I was able to picture in my mind the events of the evening.

"But the thing I find hard to come to terms with was that the defendant was laughing when he killed my son.

"I cannot understand how anyone could have such little respect for human life.

"I know it will live with me and haunt me.

"It is a vision that haunts me at present, day and night."

After the case, Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Tony Nicholson said: “Butt used his car as a deadly weapon to attack Jason Llanwarne and his friends with murderous consequences.

“The evidence shows this was clearly not some momentary loss of temper but a repeated and determined effort to inflict the maximum amount of harm from behind the wheel of his car.

“This appalling display of violence took place in a busy street and was witnessed by a number of people who were sickened by what they saw.

“Butt fled the scene and desperately tried to cover his tracks, but he was quickly caught and brought to justice as a result of a comprehensive investigation by detectives from West Yorkshire Police Homicide and Major Enquiry Team.

"He has shown a complete lack of compassion or remorse and has unnecessarily put Jason’s family through the ordeal of a trial, only pleading guilty part way through when it was clear the weight of evidence was overwhelming and then drawing the process out even further.

“Jason’s family have been left utterly devastated by his completely unnecessary death, and we hope it will provide some degree of comfort to them to know that the person responsible has now had to answer for his actions.”