Two brothers – 17-year-old Robert Culley and 19-year-old Charles Culley – have been jailed for stabbing a c2c Rail ticket inspector on an East Tilbury train. The incident happened on Friday, December 16 in the evening. On Monday, Basildon Crown Court gave Robert two-year and four-year detention orders to be served concurrently, following an earlier plea of guilty to wounding and possession of a bladed article. Charles was sentenced to four months of detention and training, after pleading guilty to common assault.
During the case, the court was told how Robert and Charles boarded the 8:20pm c2c service from Southend Central to Fenchurch Street without tickets. They were approached by revenue protection staff in uniform and were told to leave the train at East Tilbury, which was the next stop. When they arrived, there was an altercation that resulted in one of the inspectors being punched in the face and another being stabbed under one of his arms by Robert, who was using a four-inch blade.
The stabbed ticket inspector, who didn’t wish to be identified, said that Robert acted “like an animal”, lunging and jabbing with the knife. The inspector says he kept pushing his attacker away with his bag. He got hit under his left armpit, but didn’t know at the time that he had been stabbed – just that he felt all his energy go. The altercation stopped when a passenger got up and told the pair to leave; everyone was shouting for them to just go. When they did, he told his mate that he may have been stabbed. He felt warm stuff running down his side, and they saw his shirts were covered in blood when he removed his suit jacket. He passed out then and doesn’t remember much more than that.
Immediately following the incident, the pair fled the scene. The inspector who had been stabbed was taken to Basildon University Hospital was given stitches before being discharged. CCTV from the train station was immediately seized by British Transport Police (BTP), and images of the brothers were in newspapers the following day. This led to their names being revealed, and police arrested them just two days after the incident. Charles was released last month on conditional bail until being sentenced, after they pleaded guilty, while Robert was remanded.
BTP Detective Constable David Bishop, who investigated the attack, said that incidents on rail staff of this nature are rare, but they take them very seriously. this was a disgraceful and appalling attack on two men who were just doing their jobs and were within their rights to ask the brothers to leave. He thanks the media for helping to publicise their appeal so swiftly and thanks the people who called with information to help them quickly identify and arrest the brothers.
Julian Drury, the managing director of c2c, said this was an unprovoked and isolated attack on rail workers, who were doing their job of ensuring the safety of the railway for customers. They are please to see them brought to justice. The convictions were helped by a high standard of security at their stations, which includes full CCTV, and the BTP’s outstanding professionalism, which they are very grateful for. They have introduced several extra measures to make the rails even safer for staff and customers since the attack, including new enforcement officer teams that travel on daytime and late-night trains on their routes. They are determined to ensure the rail network is safe and welcoming for all.
Author's Google+ page