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Lloyds bank customer, 26, ‘killed’ 82-year-old Alzheimer’s sufferer by ‘pushing her over during a catastrophic loss of temper’ after elderly woman became ‘confused’ in branch and a ‘queue formed behind her’


  •  Myra Countinho-Lopez was allegedly pushed down by Courtney Richman 

A Lloyds bank customer killed a frail Alzheimer’s sufferer after pushing her over in a ‘catastrophic loss of temper’ after the woman became confused causing a queue to form at the branch, a court heard today.

A ‘red mist’ is said to have descended on 26-year-old Courtney Richman who is accused of the manslaughter of Myra Countinho-Lopez.

The 82-year-old, who was a regular customer at the Lloyds Bank in Howardsgate, Hertfordshire, died in hospital 10 days after she was allegedly pushed to the floor of the branch on December 16 2021.

A jury at Luton Crown Court was told that Mrs Coutinho-Lopez was well known by the Lloyd’s staff and often forgot that she had been into the bank to withdraw money.

On December 6 she went to the bank at 2pm forgetting she had withdrawn money that previous Friday and subsequently became confused.

Courtney Richman is accused of the manslaughter of Myra Countinho-Lopez (pictured) after allegedly pushing her down in a Lloyds bank

Courtney Richman is accused of the manslaughter of Myra Countinho-Lopez (pictured) after allegedly pushing her down in a Lloyds bank

The 82-year-old  was a regular customer at the Lloyds Bank in Howardsgate, Hertfordshire (pictured) and was known to staff

The 82-year-old  was a regular customer at the Lloyds Bank in Howardsgate, Hertfordshire (pictured) and was known to staff

‘Mrs Coutinho-Lopez became worried and asked the cashier to show her the balance. She was told she had withdrawn money the previous Friday. She became more confused and said she hadn’t,’ Prosecutor Martin Mulgrew said.

Another member of staff came over to try and reassure the elderly woman but she insisted that she wanted to speak to the manager as she was ‘worried’.

As there was only one cashier on duty a queue began to form with Richman said to have told the pensioner: ‘There is nothing they can do. Move out the way.’

Richman allegedly became more and more angry, accusing the pensioner of wasting of everyone’s time before allegedly pulling down her Covid mask and declaring: ‘Hurry up – people don’t have all day.’

When the elderly woman left the branch, after another customer offered to help, Richman is alleged to have said ‘oh thank God’ and sarcastically applauded. 

When Mrs Coutinho-Lopez then passed Richman she told her ‘don’t speak to me like that – you are very rude’ before swinging her handbag and striking the defendant. 

Mr Mulgrew said: ‘The defendant reacted in a wholly inappropriate and unreasonably violent manner. She angrily pushed Mrs Coutinho-Lopez forcefully to the floor of the bank. She struck the floor with some force.’

The incident allegedly occurred after the pensioner became confused and a queue formed behind her

The incident allegedly occurred after the pensioner became confused and a queue formed behind her 

He went on: ‘The red mist descended on this defendant and she reacted in a wholly inappropriate fashion to this vulnerable old lady.’

The victim, who also had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, suffered fractures of her left upper arm and thigh bone and bruising to her left upper arm, wrist, the tops of her fingers, around her rib cage and flank.

‘If you push an 82 year old woman to the floor of bank there is going to be some risk, the prosecutor added.

‘The prosecution say she unlawfuly assaulted her and as a result of the fractures fatty substances were released in her body that caused damage to her lungs and brain.’

Richman left the bank but was found the next day by a police officer who had been in the branch. Richman said the old woman had been ‘rude and abusive’. 

She said victim had told her: ‘I bet your boyfriend has left you’ and then hit her with her handbag.

In a prepared statement at the police station Richman said: ‘I was shocked and instinctively pushed her away. I feared she was assault me. I used open palms.’

Courtney Richman of Queens Avenue, Welwyn Garden City denies manslaughter and an alternative, lesser charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm.





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