Alan Barnes attacker pleads guilty to assaulting disabled pensioner

Richard Gatiss pleaded guilty at Newcastle Crown Court

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The Independent Online

A 25-year-old man has pleaded guilty to attacking disabled pensioner Alan Barnes, whose plight caught the attention of the nation and spurred well-wishers to donate £330,000.

Richard Gatiss, from Gateshead, pleaded guilty at Newcastle Crown Court to assault with intent to rob 4ft 6in, visually-impaired Mr Barnes.

He was allegedly pushed to the ground during the incident outside his home in Low Fell, on 25 January and suffered a broken collar bone.

The 67-year-old had been left too scared to leave his home after the attack, prompting Katie Cutler, 21, who lives near to Mr Barnes' Gateshead home, to start a fundraising page to help him move house.

The GoFundMe page received hundreds of thousands of pounds within weeks of being set up and Mr Barnes was presented with a cheque last week.

Mr Barnes has not yet decided how to spend the funds.

Additional reporting by PA