Three jailed over vigilante bike theft attack

Northampton Crown Court hears how wrongly suspected bike thief was kidnapped and beaten

THREE MEN have been jailed by Northampton Crown Court for kidnapping a man they suspected of stealing motorbikes worth £30,000.

Charlie Summers, 34, of Weedon Road, Dodford, was jailed for three years, Stewart Sedgewick, of Frobisher Close, Southbrook, Daventry, and Shane Radford, of Norton Road, Daventry, were each sentenced to 27 months for the attack on landscape gardener Ricky McCormick.

The court heard how the three men attacked the victim and threatened to set him alight, on Tuesday, May 5, 2009, after wrongly suspecting McCormick of stealing Summers' motorcycles, reports today's Northamptonshire Chronicle.

Judge Richard Bray said: "This is yet another case of vigilante violence. You felt the victim was responsible for the theft of motorbikes and, having reported the matter to the police, you decided to take matters into your own hands, effectively becoming the police, jury and judge.

"I appreciate the frustrations felt by those who feel offenders are not being arrested or prosecuted but that way is the road to anarchy."

The court heard how McCormick was bundled into the back of a van and had a bag placed over his head. He was then told he was going to be burnt.

In court McCormick described a number of men punching and kicking him in his face.

Mr McCormick was not charged in connection with the motorbike thefts.