Hit and run thief who ran over grandad at garden centre avoids jail

Christopher Ogley.

Christopher Ogley.

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A thief who ran over a pensioner as he tried to flee a garden centre has narrowly avoided jail.

Christopher Ogley, 43, knocked down grandad Roger Pell and reversed over him as he tried to escape Spring Green Nurseries, in Crofton, with three stolen vases worth £73.

Leeds Crown Court heard how Ogley, hit the 76-year-old with the door of his getaway vehicle before driving back over him – leaving the pensioner with a broken finger and tyre marks on his body.

Mr Pell and his grandson Jonathan had approached Ogley in the garden centre car park, after the defendant took the vases without paying on August 16.

Ogley, of Lower Cambridge Street, Castleford, pleaded guilty to theft, dangerous driving, failing to stop after an accident and assault last month.

The court heard Ogley had a number of significant underlying problems and had stole vases to sell them to buy heroin.

The Recorder of Leeds Judge Peter Collier QC gave Ogley a two-year community order and banned him from driving for a year.

He said: “It is through good fortune he didn’t suffer serious injuries – if there had been, you would have gone to prison for a long time.”

After the hearing Jonathan Pell, 25, said the sentence was “laughable”. He added: “It’s disgusting really how someone can do that and virtually get away with it. It makes me angry.

“It sends a message that you can go out and steal something and because you’ve admitted it, you can walk away.”