Pensioner killed by thieves stealing car from garage

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The Independent Online

A pensioner was run over and killed by thieves as his son clung to the window of a car being stolen from their garage forecourt.

Four people in a grey Vauxhall Cavalier had pulled up on the forecourt of the family-run business in Gornalwood, Dudley, West Midlands, on Thursday just after Henry Raybould, 75, and his son Paul, 45, had finished working on a car.

Two of the thieves jumped out and raced over to a blue Volkswagen Bora where the keys were still in the ignition, and started it. Henry Raybould jumped behind the car but they reversed into him, knocking him down. Paul Raybould grabbed the window and was dragged 20 yards. He suffered minor injuries.

His father was thrown to the ground with head injuries. He died in hospital. His sons yesterday said his father's Methodist faith was very important to him and asked for his killers to be forgiven.

He said: "We would like to extend a hand of forgiveness to the people who did this. We would like to see them brought to justice through the correct legal ways of this country."

The two cars were later discovered abandoned by police on a stretch of road known as a dumping ground for stolen cars in Bilston, Wolverhampton. A woman, thought to be aged 18 or 19, was seen getting out of the Cavalier with a man.

Detective Chief Inspector Mick Gillick, of West Midlands Police, said: "We know Mr Raybould was a local man, well-respected colleague and very much a family man. In these tragic circum-stances it is difficult when anyone has to lose their life as a result of a criminal activity. It is clear he was trying to prevent a crime and has suffered the ultimate price. All the officers have the greatest respect for what he did and we are very anxious to catch the perpetrators."

Two youths are believed to have been in the Bora used to run down Mr Raybould. Police have appealed for the thieves, who had taken the Cavalier from a nearby close, to come forward to officers.