'Like the Bronx': Gang broke into Wakefield home to stab occupant in 'revenge' attack over man's death

A gang who smashed their way into two homes in Wakefield and tried to stab a man in 'revenge' for the death of their relative have been jailed.

By Nick Frame
Wednesday, 2nd March 2022, 2:08 pm

The scene on the city centre residential street was described as being "like something from the Bronx" as Dylan Buckley, Shannon Oliver, Ashley Oliver and Georgina Evans went looking for answers following the death of 30-year-old Jerome Jones in April last year.

They first kicked their way into a flat in Wakefield, before heading to a house where they put the windows through and climbed inside to attack the occupant, Leeds Crown Court was told.

Mr Jones had died on April 8 last year, prosecutor Jeremy Hill-Baker said.

Sign up to our daily Wakefield Express Today newsletter

The gang smashed their way into the property on Earl Street, after kicking down the door of a flat on Saville Street.

The partner and mother to his two children, Shannon Oliver, her brother Ashley, Mr Jones' brother Buckley and his partner Evans went in search of two men who they thought had played a part in his death.

Facebook messages were traded between the first man and some of the defendants, with Shannon Oliver saying she wanted to meet him, before threatening him.

The court heard Buckley sent similar messages demanding to know what the man knew about his brother's death, before telling him "you are going to get what's coming to you" and added "I will make your kids watch you die".

At around 8pm on April 10, they went to the first man's flat on Saville Street and kicked his door in to gain access, but he was not present. Only Evans stayed outside.

Dylan Buckley got 27 months' jail.

They then headed for a house on Earl Street. The prosecutor said Mr Jones had been outside that property two days earlier and was taken in by the occupant, but later died.

The man and wife who lived there were subsequently questioned by police about Mr Jones' death, but no charges followed.

At around 10.30pm on April 10, the male occupant heard banging on his front door before noticing the four defendants outside his kitchen window.

He noticed Shannon Oliver was brandishing a pair of scissors. Attempts were then made to gain access by throwing garden ornaments at the windows.

Shannon Oliver got 27 months' jail.

Buckley managed to get inside once the window had been smashed and he grappled with the occupant, who held him off while Shannon Oliver tried to stab him with the scissors.

The police arrived and arrested the group. They found Buckley in an alleyway and was "clearly intoxicated" said Mr Hill-Baker, who said a lock knife was also found in his jogging bottoms.

Evans and Shannon Oliver were also aggressive to the officers, with Oliver saying "a life for a life".

A nearby resident described the scene as being "like a scene from the Bronx". Read here.

Ashley Oliver got 27 months' jail.

Shannon Oliver gave a largely no-comment interview but did say she wanted to know what happened to her partner, Mr Jones.

Ashley Oliver claimed to have no memory of what happened, while Evans said she had not been drinking and had only come along after receiving distressed text messages.

Buckley said he was in a very distressed state about his brother, and wanted to confront people about what had happened to him.

All four defendants were held on remand, with Buckley and Ashley Oliver appearing in court via video link from HMP Leeds, and Evans and Shannon Oliver from HMP New Hall.

Dylan Buckley, age 21, of Ashfield Street, Normanton, who was already on a suspended sentence for wounding, admitted a charge of burglary with an intent to cause criminal damage and violent disorder.

Shannon Oliver, age 28, of Ings Road, Wakefield, has 15 previous convictions including battery and assaulting a police officer, and also admitted a charge of burglary with an intent to cause criminal damage and violent disorder.

Ashley Oliver, age 27, of Belle Vue Gardens, Stockton-on-Tees, has previous convictions including criminal damage, battery and burglary. He too admitted a charge of burglary with an intent to cause criminal damage and violent disorder.

Georgina Evans, age 21, who was of Park Green, Normanton, has no previous convictions but admitted a charge of burglary with an intent to cause criminal damage and affray.

Mitigating for Shannon Oliver, Kristina Goodwin said she had been left devastated by her partner's death, was unable to sleep and struggled to cope, so began drinking.

Ms Goodwin said: "It was carried out during a period of raw trauma. She knows that because of her actions, her children have lost their mother (as well as their father).

"She has severe regret."

Representing Ashley Oliver, Damian Broadbent told the court that he was living in the north east and had come to Wakefield to support his sister in the wake of Mr Jones' death.

Mr Broadbent said: "He spent two or three days drinking and taking drugs. He admits his behaviour was unacceptable.

"Grief and anger played a part. It was an unusual set of circumstances."

Mitigating for Buckley, Vittoria Trigilio, said he too had been drinking heavily for days. She said: "It was an unacceptable response, he had not slept for days and had been drinking so much, he had to be taken to hospital before being taken to the police station."

Finally, for Evans, Joanne Shepherd said her client "played a secondary role" and was "clearly someone who is personable, hard working and very articulate". She said Evans' tenancy had been terminated because of her being held on remand.

Judge Mushtaq Khokhar told them: "This was a joint enterprise in a sense that you were all in it together.

"While you might have played different roles, the intention of you was very clear.

"Luckily, the police had already been called. You could not get much worse violent disorder than what took place.

"The man was being attacked in his own home. These are serious offences.

"You can't take the law into your own hands. It's fortunate that things did not get worse."

Buckley, Shannon Oliver and Ashley Oliver all received a 27-month jail sentence.

Evans was given 16 months' jail, suspended for 24 months, meaning she will be released from custody.