A Grimsby man who was found guilty yesterday of the murder of 47-year-old Shaun Lyall in Cleethorpes last year has today been jailed to life, with a minimum of 21 years, in prison.
Craig Whittle, 45, of Corporation Road in Grimsby was found guilty of murdering Mr Lyall who was found with multiple injuries at a house on Sidney Street on Tuesday 17 July 2018.
Whittle had pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice for providing a false statement in connection with Mr Lyall’s death, but not guilty to his murder.
He also faced charges in connection with an incident in Blackpool on Friday 13 July 2018. In relation to that, he pleaded guilty to affray, possession of a knife, and two counts of possessing a class A drug with intent to supply. He entered a not guilty plea to section 18 GBH.
Yesterday at Hull Crown Court the jury in the two and a half week trial unanimously found Craig Whittle guilty on all charges.
In court this morning, Judge Paul Watson QC sentenced Whittle to life in prison with a minimum of 21 years, describing the assault on Shaun Lyall as having all the “hallmarks of extreme violence” and it being a “ferocious and sustained attack, and a brutal and protracted crime of murder.”
Detective Chief Inspector Rebecca Dickinson said: “The sentencing of Craig Whittle brings to a close part of a lengthy investigation into Shaun Lyall’s death, which was a particularly brutal and unnecessary one.
“Shaun suffered horrendous injuries before he died in what was a sustained and deliberate attack. Craig Whittle has now been given life behind bars for the part he played in Shaun’s murder.
“I want to thank Shaun’s family for their strength and dignity throughout this trial, as they have had to hear horrific accounts of what happened on that day in July 2018.
“I hope this brings some closure to them, and that one person has been brought to account and found guilty for what happened to Shaun.
”I would also like to thank my officers who have worked tirelessly on this investigation, and for their hard work in bringing Craig Whittle before the court which has ultimately resulted in a life sentence for murder.”
Serena Lyall, Shaun Lyall’s mother, said: “What happened to Shaun will haunt me for the rest of my life and I feel appalled at the sickening depravity inflicted on my son. He did not deserve it.
“I could only dream that this day would come and it has. I know we could never bring Shaun back but I want to thank all the people that have brought me, my family and Shaun some closure and justice.
I want to thank the jury for dedicating their time away from their families and lives, to be part of my son’s trial. I understand that it may have been difficult and hard work but I want to express my deepest appreciation for doing this and reaching the verdict of guilty.
“I want thank Kama Melly QC for her expertise and providing the best prosecution for Shaun. And thank you to the witnesses who kindly and bravely spoke in defence of my son.
“Also I would like to thank the police for all the hard work they have done. DC Paula Barden, DC Nichola Oakley, and DCI Rebecca Dickinson have given me constant support and strength throughout this terrible time, working so hard to bring together a strong case and doing everything they could to bring Craig Whittle to justice.
“I know this isn’t the end of the road yet but because of these three officers, this murderer has been caught, tried and found guilty, and it has given me renewed hope that there will be no let-up in the enquiries to bring anyone involved in his death to justice, however long it takes.”
We are still looking for a second man in connection with Shaun Lyall’s murder. Abdi Ali, 29, who is originally from Somalia has links to the Grimsby area, Sheffield, London, Lancashire, South Yorkshire, Merseyside, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Lincolnshire, and Cleveland.
If you have any information about where he might be contact us on 999 or 101 quoting log 517 of 17 July 2018. You can also call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 11.
We advise you not to approach him and call us in the first instance.
Operation Yellowfin is our high profile initiative to tackle motorbike crime all across the force area.
You may have seen many of our online updates and social media posts regarding Op Yellowfin throughout this year, and seen the successes we’ve achieved on both the north and south banks.
It’s all thanks to the hard work done by all our officers, the intelligence they have picked up, as well as information passed on to us by the public.
In terms of motorbike thefts across the whole of North East Lincolnshire during the period covering July to September there was a decrease of 21.9%. (There were 32 thefts in 2018, and 25 in 2019,)
Over the two years combined the Sidney Sussex ward saw the highest number of thefts with 12. Waltham saw the lowest with 1.
In Grimsby where we have had a lot of reports of motorbike related antisocial behaviour there was a 29.9% overall reduction in ASB in 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. (2018 there were 134 incidents. In 2019 there were 95.)
Grimsby East saw the biggest reduction in ASB of 54.2% (48 in 2018, 22 in 2019) with Grimsby West seeing a 15.2% reduction (86 in 2018, 73 in 2019).
The East Marsh ward saw a 66.6% drop (12 in 2018, 4 in 2019) and Park ward saw a reduction of 54.55% (22 in 2018, 10 in 2019).
Some of the work that has been done has included:
Visiting local garages to speak to staff and display posters about restricting petrol sales to suspicious riders and bikes.
Tracing and recovering stolen vehicles and tracing offenders to take relevant action.
Dealing with road traffic offences and issuing warnings when needed.
Checking alleys and rear gardens of suspected offenders and associates.
Seized motorbikes being ridden illegally.
Applied for funding for DNA spray.
Gave reassurance that action was being taken, and encouraged people to let us know where bikes were being stored.
Used social media and My Community Alerts to report seizures of bikes and success stories. In turn we used information from Humber Talking and from our communities directly to help in our work.
Between July-Sept 2019 there were five people dealt with for road traffic offences, one person dealt with for possession of a controlled substance, two recoveries and three warnings for causing alarm, distress or annoyance, four stolen vehicles recovered, one recovery for no insurance, and a warrant carried out on the Nunsthorpe estate to search for stolen motorbikes.
We also had help from Humberside Fire and Rescue Service and used a drone on Bradley Pitches to identify nuisance riders.
South Bank Operations Chief Inspector Paul French said: “Our work to tackle motorbike crime will carry on. We know that when motorbikes are ridden in an antisocial manner they can be a real nuisance and pose a real danger in all our communities.
“By working together we can make sure that that does not get any worse.
“Over the last year we have visited hundreds of residents across North East Lincolnshire as part of #HumberTalking and to ask people about the issues effecting their communities.
“The antisocial use of motorcycles has been a common theme raised across the south bank. From speaking with residents and businesses, we understand the negative impact this type of behaviour can have. This is not acceptable.
“Our proactive approach to tackling the antisocial use of motorcycles as part of Op Yellowfin is a great example of ‘You said, we did’ – and we are not going to stop.
“Our message to those intent on riding motorcycles in this way is simple, our teams will be relentless in their approach to seize your bikes, to bring you to justice and to improve the quality of life in our local communities.
“Many of these results as part of Op Yellowfin are only achievable due of the ongoing support of our local communities, and we would like to thank those who have and who continue to support this proactive approach.
“I would appeal to anyone who has any information about those riding motorcycles in this way, or where they are being stored to please get in touch either by calling 101 or alternatively using Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is 100% anonymous.
“When you contact us always quote ‘Op Yellowfin’.”
Its believed to have happened around 8.00pm At the store on the junction of Bennett Rd.
Its believed that the Todays Local convenience was targeted around 8pm last night.
Police could be seen inside the store interviewing the female shop assistant and manager.
Police could be seen searching the surrounding area of the shop.
CSI were also at the store to collect evidence
Police were also seen knocking on neighbouring properties to see if anyone had seen anything.
Humberside police reported that a teenage boy entered the shop, allegedly carrying a knife, and spoke to a member of staff. The staff member challenged him and he left immediately, walking in the direction of Isaacs Hill.
“Nobody was injured in the incident and nothing was taken from the shop.”
She added: “The boy is described as being around 5ft 5ins tall, of medium build and was wearing a black ski type mask over the bottom of his face, a black hoody with the hood pulled up and black joggers.
“Officers are in the area today, carrying out enquiries and we would encourage anyone with any concerns to speak to them.”
Anyone with information about the attempted robbery can call the Humberside Police non-emergency 101 line quoting log 533 of 10/12/19 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Following reports of antisocial and criminal behaviour at a property in Cleethorpes, a closure order has been granted by the courts to prevent people from going into it for a period of time.
The order for the property on Lovett Street is in place for three months and will last until midnight on Wednesday 4 March 2020.
An application was granted last week by Grimsby Magistrates Court under section 80 of the Antisocial Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.
It will restrict individuals from going into the property apart from the tenants and their child, and the landlord, his employees, agents or subcontractors, or individuals authorised by him. Also emergency services and the council will be allowed to enter if required.
The order has been granted because of reports of disorderly and criminal behaviour there, and that its use has resulted in a serious nuisance to members of the public.
Grimsby East and Cleethorpes North Neighbourhoods Inspector Dave Stephenson said: “This order is off the back off information we have had from the community and through work done by our Community Beat Manager PC Gary Cooksey.
“The closure order was deemed necessary and proportionate on this occasion to prevent further nuisance and disorder in the wider community, and to safeguard members of the public.
“It reduces the opportunity for people connected to the address who maybe be vulnerable to be exploited.
“If the terms of the order are breached and, if an individual is convicted, they could potentially face a jail sentence.
“By listening to residents’ concerns and by working together we can tackle antisocial and criminal behaviour in all our communities across North East Lincolnshire.”