Monday, 29 December 2008

The Murder of Dorothy Stokes

On 2 February 2003, 83-year-old Dorothy Stokes was mugged just yards from her home and died later in Ealing hospital.

Amandeep Lotay pleaded guilty to manslaughter and robbery when he appeared at Snaresbrook Crown Court. He also admitted three other muggings, two of them committed on the same day.

An Old Bailey jury heard that the attack was part of a month-long robbery spree in which seven other elderly women aged 62 to 85 were targeted. Lotay and Zuber Ali had toured the streets in a car looking for old women to rob when they spotted Dorothy. Ali stayed in his car whilst Lotay followed her home. Anthony Orchard, prosecuting, said:

"Lotay ran up behind her and grabbed her shopping bag... She fell to the ground. Witnesses said they heard a woman yell and saw a young Asian man running down the street with a shopping bag. Mrs. Stokes was left sitting up, with blood on her coat and hair. She was bleeding from the nose and had a swollen eye."
She was taken to Ealing Hospital where she died six hours later.

Anthony Orchard added:

"Lotay said that to fund their drug habits they agreed to target middle-aged and elderly women, because they were easy targets."
Lotay and Ali are suspected of carrying out at least eight other similar robberies.

In September 2003, Lotay was jailed for ten years. Ali, who wept as sentenced was passed, was jailed for nine-and-a-half years.

18 months before her death, Dorothy, who was very frail, being both arthritic and disabled, was mugged outside her home and her handbag was stolen.

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