THREE men have been convicted over an aggravated burglary in Grays where three people were assaulted.
A group of men executed a targeted attack on an address in Parsonage Road, Grays.
Armed with a baseball bat and two chainsaws, they gained entry to a block of flats in Parsonage Road at around 11.55pm on 12 April 2019.
They then forced their way into one of the flats demanded money and drugs from people inside.
The investigation has established that the group were targeting another group of men, who were not present.
Upon finding that they were not present – they continued regardless and assaulted three innocent men who were inside.
One of the victims was struck to his arms and legs, another had a knife put to his throat before being struck round the head with a baseball bat and kicked in the stomach, while the third was hit on the arms.
All the while one member of the attacking group revved the chainsaw.
After a few minutes the group left and it is not believed anything was taken.
One of those assaulted – 35 year-old Trevor Cowan – was taken ill six days later and, sadly, died in hospital.
A forensic post-mortem examination was conducted and, with supporting toxicology results, his death was believed to have been as a result of the assault.
However, since then further reviews of the forensic evidence were completed and his death was no longer treated as suspicious.
Following a thorough investigation five men were arrested and later charged with aggravated burglary and two counts of assault by beating.
The men are:
David Guwazah, 38, of Leighton Gardens, Tilbury
Jamie Sheppard, 29, of Rainham Road South, Dagenham
Alfie Livett, 20, of Leighton Gardens, Tilbury
Harry Millington, 27, of Salisbury Road, Grays
Robert Grant, 28, of Townmead Road, London SW6
Guwazah was arrested at his home address on 20 April and weapons, including two samurai swords, a crossbow, air rifle, hammer, and locking knife were seized as well as a number of mobile phones.
Grant was arrested on 24 April in his car. When he was arrested a baseball bat believed to have been used in the break-in was seized and a jacket similar to the one he was seen on CCTV wearing during the incident was found during a search of his girlfriend’s address.
On the 28th May Officers from the Essex and Kent Serious Crime Directorate, supported by Local Policing teams executed a number of search warrants and the remaining members of the group were arrested.
Livett was arrested at his home address. Officers also seized a number of mobile phones and items of clothing similar to that worn by Livett at the time of the incident.
And Sheppard was arrested at his home address.
All five had also been charged with murder in connection with Mr Cowan’s death but, following the review of the forensic evidence which identified his death was not suspicious, the prosecution offered no evidence in relation to this charge.
On the first day of their trial at Chelmsford Crown Court, Millington pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary. Guwazah, Grant, and Livett were today (Friday 7 February) found guilty while Sheppard was found not guilty
Sentencing is due to take place on 6 March.
Detective Chief Inspector Daniel Stoten, from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “This was a violent break-in where the victims were subjected to intimidation, threats, and assaults.
“This was clearly a planned and pre-meditated burglary by a group intent on terrorising those inside the flat.
“All those convicted now face the prospect of significant jail time.”
Two other men who had also been charged in connection, 46 year-old Stephen Moloney, of Crow Lane, Romford and 34 year-old Jamie Dowman, of Raphael Avenue, Tilbury, but no evidence was offered at the start of the trial.