Thieves caught as they tried to escape

Issued on 12/3/19 at 9:50 a.m.

Two thieves were stopped by members of the public as they tried to make their escape in a stolen vehicle.

Michael Settersfield and Danielle Lunn had stolen a bag from a parked car in Littleton Street, Leicester, at around 1.10pm on Thursday 7 February before attempting to drive off in a Ford Torneo vehicle. The Ford Torneo had been reported stolen in Blisset Road, Leicester, around an hour earlier.

But as Settersfield and Lunn tried to leave the scene, they were stopped by members of the public who blocked the vehicle in and detained them.

Yesterday (11 March), at Leicester Crown Court, Settersfield, 32, of Dominion Road, Leicester, and Lunn, 32, of Aikman Close, Leicester, both pleaded guilty to theft, taking a vehicle without consent and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Settersfield also admitted possession of an offensive weapon and common assault.

Both defendants were remanded in custody and will be sentenced on 22 March.

The bag had been taken from the parked vehicle in Littleton Street when Lunn was spotted with it by the owner of the bag who had left the car. The victim chased after Lunn catching up with her which led to a struggle over the bag. The victim fell to the floor as Lunn then tried to escape in the stolen Ford Torneo vehicle which was being driven by Settersfield.

But another member of public in the area, who had seen the incident, used his vehicle to block in the stolen vehicle. The stolen vehicle was seen being driven at a low wall before becoming stuck. The man who had blocked the vehicle in then chased Settersfield and Lunn.

Settersfield was reported to have threatened the man chasing him with a metal object but the man managed to disarm the defendant and restrain him. Lunn was then detained by another member of the public as police arrived and made the arrests.

Settersfield and Lunn denied the offences in interview but investigative work including a CCTV trawl, dashcam analysis and gathering forensic evidence, in addition to witness accounts, linked them to the incident.

Detective Constable Sam Bates said: “Members of the public who were at the scene of this incident, showed bravery and courage as they put themselves in danger to catch Settersfield and Lunn. This included victims of the defendants’ crimes. I sincerely thank them all for their actions that day which led to a quick arrest and ultimately to this result today.

“Settersfield and Lunn had no concern for anyone else that day as they stole from people who were carrying out their jobs at the time. But following a number of strong witness accounts, along with other investigative work, they were left with no choice but to admit their responsibility for the offences.”

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