Boiling water threats to terrified mum

Crime story
Crime story

A WOMAN was attacked in her own home by three vigilantes out for revenge after her boyfriend committed a burglary.

During her ordeal, victim Marcelle Perks was struck and threatened with having boiling water thrown over her while her horrified young son watched on helpless to assist her.

The intruders - two women and the partner of the burglary victim - called round at Ms Perks upstairs flat in Scholes looking for the culprit, a court heard.

He was not in as he was in police custody but the trio came in and one of them, Claire Cummings, who uses a walking stick for medical reasons, pushed her against the bannisters.

“Her 15-year-old son witnessed her being pushed and hit by the two women. They continued to hit her and the man, James Green, took the boy upstairs as the two women dragged his mother upstairs. He put him in the living room and his mother was forced into the kitchen,” said Andrew Downie, prosecuting.

Cummings was saying, “we want our stuff back” and Ms Perks explained she did not know anything about it. Cummings struck her to the head with her walking stick and Green was holding her son preventing him from helping her.

The boy was asked about missing jewellery and Cummings or her companion, Lynn Woosey, pushed him. Items in the room including a television and vase were smashed.

Green went into the kitchen and told the complainant he wanted £500 by 6pm the next day or he would “sort her out”.

Cummings, 42, switched on the kettle as if to boil it and tried to pour the contents over Ms Perks but fortunately it was only lukewarm and most of it missed her, said Mr Downie.

She was threatened with an iron but managed to get into the bathroom but Cummings followed her and picked up a pan which was in there and hit her to the head.

The group then left, taking her mobile, two tablet computers, keys and the pan and the victim called the police and was taken to Wigan Infirmary where she was treated for lacerations to her scalp.

When arrested, Cummings and Woosey, 41, both of Bedford Street, Scholes, claimed they had been elsewhere at the time of the attack on January 14.

Jailing them all, Judge David Aubrey QC said that they had rightly suspected who had burgled the home of Green’s partner and the culprit is currently serving 54 months for the offence.

“Each of you decided to take the law into your own hands. You intended since you were within that property to exact some revenge, to exact some retribution by taking certain items.

“Such an attack by three of you going round on the bounce and taking the law into your own hands cannot be tolerated. It is aggravated by the fact that at the victim’s 15-year-old son was present.”

Judge Aubrey said the boy had been scared and when they threatened to pour boiling water over his mum it must have been a terrifying experience.

Green, 42, of Shildon Close, Whelley, had a suspended sentence for battery hanging over him at the time and the judge jailed him for 11 months with a month of that suspended sentence activated to run consecutively.

He told him: “You should have known better. You knew only too well what was likely to happen and you knew you were the subject of a suspended sentence.”

Cummings was jailed for 19 months and Woosey received 14 months. The trio had all pleaded guilty to theft, Cummings also admitted wounding and Green and Woosey admitted affray.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that they all have previous convictions for battery.

Anthony O’Donohoe, defending Woosey, who has 39 previous convictions, said she has served the equivalent of 14 months while in custody on remand.

Defence barrister, Andrew Jebb said that Cummings had been out of trouble since 2005.

Phil Astbury, defending Green, said that he regretted the incident. He has been in the same job for 21 years and had never been to prison.