A grandson left his grandma in fear for her life after months of abusing and controlling her life – pulling her hair and forcing her to withdraw her savings to fund his drug addiction.
David Green, 26, stole £13,000 from his grandma’s bank account while she was recovering from a stroke and afraid to leave her own home, Preston Crown Court heard.
In December 2021, Green’s cousin, the victim’s granddaughter, visited the home he shared with his grandma and was concerned about some bruising on her 75-year-old relative, Lancs Live reports.
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She contacted the police, who emotionally considered Green’s compulsive and controlling behavior toward his grandmother, which had lasted for nearly a year. She told police she even feared her grandson would “murder” her.
Rachel Faux, the prosecutor, said Green was raised by his grandma from the age of 11, since his father died and his mother was no longer able to care for him. His grandmother described him as a “troubled child” whose life had taken a downward spiral.
He verbally and physically abused her, forcing her to withdraw her life savings to pay for his drug addiction while she recovered from a series of strokes she suffered three years earlier. As a result of her illness, the main arteries in her neck were only working at 5% efficiency.
“All he had to do was press it and it would kill me. He knows that,” said the vulnerable pensioner. The woman described Green throwing pots at her and punching holes in walls, and said he spoke to her in a “menacing tone” which made her afraid to leave the house.
The court heard in November 2021 that her grandson grabbed her hair and pulled her backwards, telling her, “You know what’s going to happen if you don’t give me money.” She shook and agreed, after the attack 20 Withdrawing pounds of cash, she said.
At the end of November, Green and his girlfriend moved into his grandma’s house without asking her. Paying no board, the couple ate her food and insisted she do her laundry and wait for them. They disrupted her sleep with loud arguments and when Green’s grandma asked him to keep the noise down, he threatened to push her down the stairs, Ms Faux said.
“When they argued until 3:30 a.m., that was the last straw. At one point he came down the street and threatened her and she thought he was going to murder her.”
However, in a statement about the victim’s impact, Green’s grandmother said she wanted to help him with his mental health issues and was concerned about how he would fare in prison. She said she was nervous and paranoid in her own house and afraid that one day he would get carried away.
She added that she didn’t want to bother her granddaughter, Green’s cousin, because she was pregnant, but was relieved the young woman had intervened as she could now start making a life for herself. “I just want my grandson back,” she said.
Thomas Worsfold, defending, said Green moved in with his grandma during an extremely traumatic childhood and relied heavily on her throughout his childhood. He said the couple have a close relationship, but he started smoking cannabis at the age of 11 to cope.
He started using cocaine as a teenager and by the age of 25 it had escalated to crack, Mr Worsfold said. Green was diagnosed with PTSD and Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder, but had not received any therapy as a child or young adult.
His drug use affected his behavior, which Mr Worsfold said “is not an excuse but paints a picture of someone who might not have behaved the way he did had it not been for his need for money or the impact of his drug habit.”
Green of Newlyn Place, Ingol, Preston pleaded guilty to engaging in coercive and controlling behavior and threatening harm for financial gain. A parole report says he feels terrible about how he treated his grandma, the choices he made and the harm he caused her.
Recorder Peter Horgan said at the sentencing: “She was a worried and torn woman, your grandma, when she gave her police interview. She has been torn between her natural feelings for you as her grandma and her desire to help you with your mental health issues, but she is also concerned about how you will react to allegations of abuse and if you will be arrested.
“She remains conflicted between that and trying to restore some sense of normalcy to her life after reporting you and taking you out of her home. She was scared, nervous, paranoid and relied on others to report it.
“It’s an unfortunate series of crimes over a year. It is a serious intrusion into her wellbeing and life from a woman who has taken the time to raise you since the age of 11.”
The judge honored Green’s guilty plea and said he was taking into account the progress Green had made since leaving his grandmother’s home. However, he said the case was so serious that he could not sit out the sentence and sent him to prison for 16 months. He also issued a five-year restraining order, ordering that a baseball bat and drug paraphernalia found in the home be confiscated and destroyed.
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