Mum breaks back in armed raid ordeal

Kelly Marie Johnson who was subjected to a robbery in her home in Normanton which resulted in her breaking her back as she leapt from a first floor window.
Kelly Marie Johnson who was subjected to a robbery in her home in Normanton which resulted in her breaking her back as she leapt from a first floor window.

A YOUNG mum broke her back jumping out of a window trying to get help after two armed burglars burst into her home.

Kelly Marie Johnson, 19, may never recover from the horrific injuries she sustained as she leapt from the window to escape from the intruders and get help for her young children and boyfriend Nuno Alexandre Ferreira Da Costa.

Mark Carter and Glen Hall burst into her home armed with a metal bar and a wooden bat, locked the door and demanded cash before attacking Mr Da Costa.

One of the thugs stopped Miss Johnson from calling the police and started hitting her around the head.

She ran and jumped out of an upstairs window to run and get help for her two sons, Alex, two, and Matthew, three, and her boyfriend.

Mr Da Costa, 37 said: “One of them started hitting me around the head and screaming ‘where is the money?’

“I was terrified of what they were going to do to Kelly and the kids because they were so desperate. I thought they wanted to get me out of the way so they could get to her.”

Miss Johnson said she could hear her children crying and locked them in their bedroom to keep them safe.

She said: “I had to do something. There was nothing else I could do. I couldn’t get out downstairs. I didn’t think about how far down it was – it was the only way I could get help.”

Carter and Hall stole a large sum of cash and fled after being chased from the house by Mr Da Costa, who hadn’t realised Miss Johnson had jumped from the window.

She was rushed to hospital where doctors told her she had broken and fractured her spine in several places.

Miss Johnson now has to wear a support brace .

She said: “At first they didn’t know if I was going to walk again. The bottom of my back was completely smashed and it can’t take the strain of my upper body so it’s starting to push my spine out of shape.”

Carter and Hall were jailed for a total of 21 years after a jury found them guilty of aggravated burglary and grievous bodily harm at the flat, on Park Green, Normanton, on July 30, last year.

Carter, 45, of Montague Street, Agbrigg, and Hall, 43, of Bryan Close, Castleford, pleaded not guilty during the trial at Leeds Crown Court and claimed they had only gone to the house to buy heroin.

They said two foreign men stole the money from the flat and carried out the attack on Miss Johnson and Mr Da Costa.

But the jury rejected their account.

Last Friday, the judge, Recorder David Wilby QC, sentenced Carter to 11 years for aggravated burglary and four years concurrent for grievous bodily harm.

Hall was given a sentence of 10 years for aggravated burglary and four years concurrent for grievous bodily harm

He said: “This was a very, very serious offence. The consequences of your actions are that a young woman of 19 is very seriously disabled and incapable of looking after her young children all because you wanted to steal at maximum a few thousand pounds.

“You should be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves and thoroughly ashamed of the quite appalling way you cast these young people during this trial.”