An Easingwold killer has been jailed for life after committing an atrocious murder of an innocent van driver, by cutting his throat. Murderer James Brabbs will spend much of the rest of his life behind bars after admitting that he killed the van driver, whom he had known personally.
He appeared to show some remorse, but that was not enough to avoid a significant jail term of almost 30 years. James Brabbs showed during his free life that he was a monster, and a danger to members of the public. The murder was a culmination of many years of violent and anti social behavior.
The cold blooded killer was jailed yesterday 20/05/2013 for life. Even his barrister did not seem to support him, after describing his actions as the “atrocious murder of a van driver”. It emerged during the trial that that James Brabbs had been on bail for carrying weapons at the time he stabbed to death innocent Mohammed Saleem Khan.
Brabbs was well known to the police, and had been arrested with a seven-inch kitchen knife and a knuckle duster, following a search, just three weeks before the killing in September. Previously the knife fiend had been jailed for four years in 2009 for two robberies, at least one of which involved a blade.
This is the type of man who shows no concern for others safety, and if you were to cross him in a darkened alley, it may not have a positive outcome. At least for now he will not be free to kill, rob, and murder for quite some time.
During one of the previous robberies for which he received the 4 year sentence, he had shamelessly held a knife to the throat of a young male car driver, demanding money, mobile telephone and car keys in July 2008. Police believe he may be responsible for a long list of violent crimes across Teeside.
A month before the car jacking and knife robbery he had been one of three rejects of society, who carried out a brutal street mugging in which a couple were robbed punched and kicked in the city of York.
On the 22/09/2012, he had befriended victim Mr Khan, 36, helping Mr Khan to delivered shower products around North Yorkshire in a hire van. Mr Khan gave him the job partly out of pity to what he thought was a reformed criminal.
Deciding Mr Khan would make a good robbery target, Brabbs armed himself with a kitchen knife to rob family man Khan, originally from Luton. He believed that Khan had money and a stash of cannabis. This belief has never been proven, and no drugs or cash were recovered, despite police searches of Khans home and business.
Khan, in the drivers seat of a hire van, resisted a request by Brabbs to take him to his money and drug stash, 27-year-old Brabbs then proceeded to get angry and stabbed him in the throat, causing massive bleeding and loss of life. Brabbs fled, leaving Khan to bleed to death. Teesside Crown Court heard that Brabbs, from Easingwold, but of no fixed abode, was a danger to society. He will have to serve a minimum term of 29 years before he will even be considered for release.
Initially Brabbs had denied the murder, and he had been three days into his trial when he decided to change his plea. It is thought that this resulted after pressure from his legal team, who believed he would get a reduced sentence, but they were wrong.
Barrister, Tim Roberts, QC, has said in a statement that Brabbs had decided over the weekend, after taking time to think in his cell, that he would not continue with his “sham” defence. There have been suggestions of undue pressure being places on Brabbs from his legal team.
Perhaps in a concerted attempt to reduce sentence, or perhaps Brabbs does have a heart, the Judge, Simon Bourne-Arton, QC, was told that Brabbs did not want to go into the witness box and tell lies about what happened, and that Brabbs was ready to admit guilt. Roberts made a concerted effort to get the sentence reduced, but the judge was having none of it.
Brabbs, in a shameless act of self preservation, and an attempt to avoid full justice, offered apologies to Khans family in the public gallery. His apology to the family of Mohammed Khan for the atrocious act that he committed may or may not be accepted by the family, though to me it is a hollow act of a condemned man.
Before setting sentence the court heard that Brabbs has previous convictions for many crimes such as arson, burglary, assault and carrying weapons going back to his schooldays, a career criminal and danger to the public.
Judge Bourne-Arton summed up the evidence well and told Brabbs: “I have concluded, in short, that you are a thoroughly dangerous individual.”