Customer killed woman with Alzheimer’s in queue at Lloyds bank

A Lloyds bank customer stands accused of causing the death of an elderly woman with Alzheimer’s by pushing her to the floor in a ‘catastrophic loss of temper’. Courtney Richman, 26, is currently on trial for manslaughter at Luton Crown Court following the death of Myra Countinho-Lopez on December 16, 2021. The 82-year-old passed away in hospital 10 days after an incident at Lloyds Bank in Howardsgate, Hertfordshire.

Mrs Coutinho-Lopez was a regular at the branch and often forgot she had already withdrawn money. That was the case on December 6, 2021 when she visited the bank at 2pm and became confused after forgetting she had withdrawn money the previous Friday. Prosecutor Martin Mulgrew said: ‘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 She was told she had withdrawn money the previous Friday.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.’

Another staff member tried to reassure the elderly woman who insisted on speaking to a manager. With only one cashier on duty, a queue started to form. Richman, from Welwyn Garden City, is alleged to have told the pensioner to ‘move out of the way’, saying: ‘There is nothing they can do’.

She is accused of becoming increasingly angry with the pensioner, accusing Mrs Coutinho-Lopez of wasting people’s time. Richman then allegedly pulled down her Covid mask and said: ‘Hurry up – people don’t have all day.’ Another customer offered to help the 82-year-old as she left the branch. Richman sarcastically applauded and said ‘oh thank God’, the court heard.

In a prepared statement, Richman claimed the victim told her ‘I bet your boyfriend has left you’ before the victim hit her with her handbag. Richman said: ‘I was shocked and instinctively pushed her away. I feared she was going to assault me. I used open palms.’ Richman denies manslaughter and an alternative, lesser charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm.

Scroll to Top