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Bank push death: Courtney Richman spared jail after killing pensioner Myra Coutinho-Lopez | UK News

A 26-year-old woman who pushed over and killed an elderly pensioner with Alzheimer’s at a bank has avoided prison.

Courtney Richman was found guilty of the manslaughter of Myra Coutinho-Lopez, 82, who died after she was pushed at Lloyds Bank in Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire on 6 December 2021.

She was sentenced to 16 months in prison, suspended for 21 months, at Luton Crown Court on Friday.

Ms Coutinho-Lopez, who had dementia, had gone to the bank to withdraw money but became confused when presented with her bank statements at a counter, the court heard.

Richman was in a queue of other customers that began to form as the staff tried to help.

An argument broke out between the pair over the length of time Ms Coutinho-Lopez was taking, and Richman clapped her hands when the elderly woman moved from the counter after assistance from a member of public.

Footage showed Ms Coutinho-Lopez swung her handbag towards Richman, hitting her back as she turned away.

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Richman retaliated by pushing Ms Coutinho-Lopez with both hands, causing her to land on her hip and shoulder, according to Herts Police.

She was taken to hospital, where she died from her injuries 10 days later.

Richman was arrested the day after the incident.

‘Trapped in emotional prison’

Michelle Lopez, Ms Coutinho-Lopez’s daughter, paid tribute to her mother after the sentencing, saying: “We’ve been forced to navigate the difficulties and trials of life without my beloved mother for over two years.

“Her life was taken away from her on 16 December 2021, and we’ve been left trapped in an emotional prison with scars too deep to be mended ever since.

“She’s left an unspeakable void to all who knew her including her beloved children, extended family and lifelong friends worldwide.”

She added: “The yearning for my mother’s presence is a constant ache in my heart, particularly as I observe other daughters engaging in mundane activities with their mothers, such as grocery shopping or sharing a coffee or meal together. These memorable moments now evoke a feeling of emptiness.

“Those who knew her miss her deeply and will continue to cherish her memory and honour her legacy of kindness, fortitude and generosity. She was a shining light on how to survive and thrive in life despite adversities and setbacks.

“After enduring years of waiting, I’m thankful to the jury for reaching a guilty verdict, and for the work of Hertfordshire Constabulary officers and the Crown Prosecution Service.”

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