Ten years behind bars for Chatteris teenager who brutally attacked ‘well-liked and vulnerable’ Speedy
PUBLISHED: 16:54 19 August 2019 | UPDATED: 15:56 21 August 2019
Supplied / Cambridgeshire Police
A Chatteris teenager who brutally attacked a “well-liked and vulnerable man” that will likely never be able to live independently again, has been jailed for 10 years.
Michael Cocksedge, 18, was seen walking home with the Robert Lea also known as 'Speedy', 53, late on Christmas Eve 2018 after an event at Chatteris Working Men's Club.
The victim was found in Station Street, Chatteris, on Christmas morning with severe injuries.
He was taken to Addenbrooke's Hospital, in Cambridge, and placed in an induced coma.
A CT scan found a fracture of his left eye, nasal bone and nose as well as considerable facial swelling.
Cocksedge, of Treeway, pleaded guilty to two counts of grievous bodily harm with intent and was sentenced at Peterborough Crown Court on Monday.
Lea's sister Linda said: "He (Robert) suffers from post-traumatic amnesia and has been transferred to a specialist rehabilitation unit.
"He has to be fed soft foods and still has to be tube fed as well. He still cannot sufficiently feed himself. His speech is not back to normal yet, it is slowly improving.
"He cannot walk; his only means of movement is in a wheelchair if someone pushes him around.
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"He is undergoing very intensive physiotherapy and speech therapy. The aim is to try to improve him enough to consider independent living, but at this time we are not sure he will achieve this".
Detective Constable Aaz Tourabi said: "A well-liked and vulnerable member of the community was brutally attacked without reason.
"I hope this sentence will go some way to making him feel safe again."
Anger over the sentence spilt over into social media comments on the case.
"Speedy gets a life sentence where as this piece of work that did this is given a slapped wrist - not long enough, nowhere near long enough" was one response.
Another felt "it should have been a minimum jail term of 25 years".
In the days after the attack on Speedy, friends opened a gofundme campaign to help him financially. They set a target of £1,000 but to date the appeal raised twice that amount.
"Robert has lived in Chatteris most of he's life round Burnsfield estate next door to me," said his friend Anita Evans when she launched the campaign.
"He is the kindest hearted person going and would help anyone if he could. He is a true West Ham supporter and likes a couple of pints down the workers at the weekends.
"He is a true gentleman with a heart of gold and wouldn't hurt a bloody fly."
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