Hero dad ‘bat­tered’ in bid to stop vi­o­lent thief

Macclesfield Express - - BARNABY FESTIVAL - STU­ART GREER

AHEROIC home­owner rugby-tack­led a ‘ dan­ger­ous’ and vi­o­lent burglar who was try­ing to steal his bike.

Brave Paul Bay­ley, 55, was punched, bit­ten and had his head smashed against the ground while try­ing to re­strain thief Aaron McKen­ley-Reeves un­til the po­lice ar­rived.

The in­truder, who was try­ing to steal a £2,000 bike out from Mr Bay­ley’s garage in Poyn­ton on De­cem­ber 13, last year, man­aged to fight his way free and es­cape.

But the next day McKen­ley-Reeves, 21, broke into a farm in Adling­ton and stole a Land Rover. Po­lice used a he­li­copter and dogs to catch him.

At Ch­ester Crown Court McKen­ley-Reeves, of Bur­ton Road, Manch­ester, ad­mit­ted two charges of bur­glary, as­sault and ag­gra­vated ve­hi­cle tak­ing.

He was sen­tenced to an in­def­i­nite hos­pi­tal or­der and a 12-month driv­ing ban.

Speak­ing af­ter the sen­tence, Mr Bay­ley said: “I was putting the Christ­mas dec­o­ra­tions up and came down to the lad­der to find him wheel­ing my bike out of the garage. I chal­lenged him and he threw the bike at me and tried to run. I rugby tack­led him out of in­stinct. There was a scuf­fle. I got bat­tered, bit­ten and punched. He smashed my head against the drive. I was try­ing to re­strain him and called for my daugh­ter to call the po­lice. He threat­ened to hurt me more if I didn’t let go.”

Mr Bay­ley had his in­juries treated in hos­pi­tal.

He said: “My life has not been the same since that day. I have ques­tioned whether I did the right thing con­fronting him when I found him in my garage. But I have con- cluded that I would do the same thing again. It is a £2,000 bike which I worked hard to pay for. Why should I give that up?

“My 15-year-old daugh­ter has also been badly af­fected by the ex­pe­ri­ence as she saw the scuf­fle and it has left her feel­ing un­safe. But at least we have some clo­sure now he has been sen­tenced.

“The po­lice have done a fan­tas­tic job and I would like to thank them.”

DC Shane Owens, from Mac­cles­field Po­lice, said: “McKen­ley-Reeves was a dan­ger­ous in­di­vid­ual and we had to pull out all the stops to catch him. That meant us­ing the he­li­copter and po­lice dogs to bring him in. He is now off the streets.

“I would like to com­ment of­fi­cers on a fan­tas­tic team ef­fort but also Mr Bay­ley, who showed in­cred­i­ble brav­ery in his ef­forts to stop McKen­leyReeves to pro­tect his fam­ily and the wider pub­lic.”

Do­minic Sal­ter

●● Dozens of bik­ers es­corted Paul Shoe­smith’s fu­neral cortege

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