By Alec Whitaker – Photos by Cavendish Press
TWO NHS workers were carjacked at knifepoint in Hattersley and warned they would be stabbed after two yobs laid in wait for them to arrive for a night shift at a medical centre.
Marnie Foxcroft was giving her colleague Aimee Harvey a lift to work in her BMW sports car when they were ambushed while opening the gates to Hattersley Group Practice.
One of the young thugs, who was disguised in a black and white skeleton mask, put on a deep voice as he shouted: ‘Give me the keys before I stab you’ before the pair hijacked the car.
They then made off the vehicle as the two women, both domestic assistants, got out and ran for help.
Police caught Nathan Taylor, 28, and Mason Mansfield, 18, after they were spotted inside the 530D GT vehicle 40 minutes later and led officers on a high-speed pursuit in which they ploughed into another car and jumped a red light.
In a statement Miss Foxcroft said the robbery outside the Hattersley Group Practice on Hattersley Road East had left her so fearful she was unable to return to work.
At Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester Taylor, of no fixed address, and Mansfield, of St Albans Avenue, Ashton, admitted robbery.
Taylor, who also admitted dangerous driving and driving while banned, was jailed for six years while Mansfield, who also pleaded guilty to having a bladed article and an unrelated robbery in which a man was mugged for his £700 trainers, was locked up for 40 months.
The raid occurred as the two women were making their way to work at 8.30pm on October 28, 2019.
David Toal, prosecuting, said: “When they arrived, they both got out of the car and walked towards the gate that leads to the building but as Marnie Foxtrot was putting a key into the gate the two women were confronted by two masked males.
“One of them was described as wearing a distinctive black and white skeleton mask was also armed with a knife. He said to Marnie Foxtrot ‘Give me the keys before I stab you’ and Miss Foxcroft was naturally very frightened.
“She frantically searched her pockets and then found her key to the BMW which she handed over to Mansfield who then passed the key to Taylor and the women were then told to ‘run before I stab you up’ so they did.
“The two defendants then used the keys to drive away Miss Foxcroft’s BMW as the two women ran to some nearby houses to report what had happened.
“Police patrols were then told to look out for the stolen BMW and was it was spotted around 40 minutes later.
“Taylor realised the police were following and he started to speed up and there was then a lengthy pursuit with the car being driven at high speed on suburban roads, causing other vehicles to take evasive action.
“At one point it collided with another vehicle as it went round a bend before continuing at speed. Shortly after going through a red traffic light.
“Eventually, the BMW drove down a dead end and the officer saw the vehicle stop. The two males exited the driver’s door one after the other and ran off.
“A police officer with a dog attended the scene and picked up a scent and he took the officer along the canal path where Taylor was found out of breath.
“The distinctive black and white scarf come bandana was recovered the front foot well of the BMW where Mansfield was sitting. DNA was found on that item of clothing matching Mansfield.
“The mobile phone of Taylor was also found and examined. It was consistent with that mobile phone travelling the distance from the scene of the robbery to where it was abandoned consistent with the police pursuit and there were text messages on that phone between Taylor and Mansfield before the robbery and even one from Mansfield to Taylor at the time of arrest.’’
Taylor had 51 offences on his record including robbery and attempted robbery dating back to 2003.
Howard Bernstein, who defended Taylor, said: “This was clearly a joint enterprise, but he was not the prime mover. He wants to put this behind him.”
For Mansfield, defence counsel Saul Brody said: “Taylor was considerably older, more mature and criminally more sophisticated than Mansfield, but I accept it must have been a terrifying incident although reading from a witness statement, he sounded like a young male trying to put on a deep voice. He was pretending to be older and that indicates a level of his immaturity.
“Nathan Taylor’s friends preyed upon the vulnerabilities of this defendant and made him a part of their offending behaviour.”
Judge Sophie McKone said: “You subjected these two women to a most terrifying attack and made their experience even more terrifying by wearing masks. What you did to them was a truly wicked thing. It will affect them for many years to come.”