Man in court over pensioner mugging

Published: Tuesday 10th February 2015 by The News Editor

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A 25-year-old man will appear in court today charged with assaulting disabled pensioner Alan Barnes.

Mr Barnes suffered a broken collarbone in the incident in Gateshead on January 25, prompting an internet campaign which raised thousands of pounds for him.

Richard Gatiss, from Gateshead, is charged with assault with intent to rob.

An online appeal to help 4ft 6in visually impaired Mr Barnes was set up by beautician Katie Cutler after the incident outside the 67-year-old’s home in Low Fell.

The fund was halted by Mr Barnes’s family with donations standing at more than £329,000 after the appeal went around the world.

Chief Superintendent Andy McDyer, of Northumbria Police, said: “I’d like to reassure people that, since this happened, we’ve been relentless in our investigation and in following up lines of inquiry.

“In the early hours of Monday, officers made an arrest in connection with the investigation and this man has now been charged and is progressing through the court process.”

Ms Cutler, 21, from Gateshead, said she set up the fund hoping to raise £500 for new curtains or carpets and never dreamed the campaign would go global.

Gatiss will appear at Gateshead Magistrates’ Court.

Published: Tuesday 10th February 2015 by The News Editor

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