Teenager who shot boy on way to school has 24-year jail term reduced on appeal

Jacob Talbot-Lummis will now serve 18 years in custody with an extended five years on licence. Credit: Suffolk Police

A teenager who shot a 15-year-old boy in the face with a double-barrelled shotgun while he walked to school in Suffolk has had his sentence for attempted murder reduced.

Jacob Talbot-Lummis was also 15 when he took the weapon from his grandfather's home and shot the boy at "very close range" in September 2020.

Sentencing him at Ipswich Crown Court last November, Judge Martyn Levett said the victim suffered "unimaginably serious injuries", flashbacks and continued to be "reliant on his family".

Talbot-Lummis, then 16, was sentenced to 24 years in custody and five years on extended licence.

But three senior judges at the Court of Appeal reduced the sentence for attempted murder to 18 years in custody with an extended five years on licence.

The court heard that Talbot-Lummis took his father's car to drive to the location and waited for the boy for around an hour before shooting him, after telling another boy that he planned to shoot the victim and then move to Guatemala.

Police at the scene of the shooting in September 2020. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"The extent to which the offence was planned was, in our view, exceptional," Lord Justice Holroyde said.

At a hearing in London, Talbot-Lummis appeared via video link to challenge the length of his sentence.

His barrister Diana Ellis QC said the sentence was "manifestly excessive".

She argued that the sentencing judge had failed to properly consider the amount of mitigation the teenager had, including his youth, "dysfunctional" upbringing and the bullying he said he faced from his victim.

During the original sentencing, Judge Levett said he did not accept "there was bullying of the scale or the degree suggested".

Lord Justice Holroyde, sitting with Mr Justice Julian Knowles and Mr Justice Cotter, said the trial judge was "in the best position to assess the evidence".

But, he continued: "What, with respect, he did not address however was the full effect of the bullying, whatever its level, may have been on the appellant."

The senior judges said there was evidence that Talbot-Lummis had suffered from mental health difficulties, including evidence from a friend and experts.

They also said the sentencing judge should have taken Talbot-Lummis' youth more into account and reduced the sentence further from the number of years that would have been given to an adult.

Lord Justice Holroyde said: "There was, in our view, no basis for treating the appellant as being more mature than others of his age."

Allowing the appeal, the senior judges also reduced a concurrent sentence for possession of a gun with intent to endanger life from 12 years to nine years.