Smethwick men jailed for machete and dog attack over stolen Transit van

By Jordan Reynolds | Smethwick | Crime | Published:

Two Smethwick men have been jailed for six years each after attacking a man with a machete then setting a dog on him.

Ryan McGough and Ciaran Heaps, right

Ryan McGough attacked Martin Whitehouse with the machete before Ciaran Heaps set an American pitbull-type dog on their victim.

Mr Whitehouse suffered a deep wound to his arm, as well as cuts to his chest, hand and foot, in the attack outside his home in Lewisham Road.

The dispute began after Mr Whitehouse sold family friend McGough a Ford Transit van, taking cash and a red Volkswagen Polo in exchange.

But after McGough heard the van was stolen he began making threats and demanding his money and the Polo back.

McGough turned up at the 45-year-old’s home on April 18 armed with a black-handled machete.

He smashed the windscreen of the Polo, parked on the driveway before swinging the machete at his victim.

Heaps then let the dog out of the van which clawed at Mr Whitehouse’s chest.

As he raised his arms to defend himself, McGough swung the machete at him causing a large wound to his wrist.


Police found forensic evidence linking one of the attackers to a fingerprint on the weapon which they dropped at the scene.

Ryan McGough, of St Paul’s Road, and Ciaran Heaps, of Mansion Crescent, both aged 30, admitted wounding at Wolverhampton Crown Court on November 4.

The pair were both sentenced to six years in prison and also issued with a restraining order to stay away from Mr Whitehouse for 10 years and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £170.

Det Con Karn Sharma from force CID, said: "This was a particularly vicious attack sparked by a row over the sale of a van.


"As well as taking a machete with them to confront their victim, they also took an American pitbull-type dog which they unleashed on Mr Whitehouse.

"We understand how traumatic the whole incident must have been for those witnessing the savage attack, as well as for the victim.

“The offenders had fled before the police arrived, but the quick actions of officers at scene secured vital evidence, that was later forensically linked to the attackers."

Jordan Reynolds

By Jordan Reynolds
Reporter - @jreynolds_star

Senior reporter at the Express & Star.

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