Terror of lottery winners attacked by armed raiders in their bedroom
TWO elderly lottery winners who scooped a £4.2m jackpot were left terrified when masked gunmen burst into their home.
Tommy Cone, 75, and his wife Joan, 72, were woken at 2.20am by a loud bang as balaclava-clad raiders smashed into their Moorside home and slammed open their bedroom door, sending it crashing into a dressing table.
The petrified couple saw two masked men, one aiming a silver revolver at them.
The gunman walked over to retired security guard Mr Cone, who has breathing problems and cancer, and pointed the weapon at the OAP’s right temple as his henchman shouted ‘he will shoot you’ and demanded keys to a safe.
The gunman then aimed his weapon at the pensioner’s right knee as his wife screamed: “We’ve got nothing worth taking.”
The two robbers, together with a third accomplice, escaped by smashing through French doors after stealing only a £250 watch and a bunch of keys, a court heard.
After the trio of robbers were jailed, Mr Cone, who has twelve grandchildren, told the Advertiser they were targeted because of their 2003 windfall.
Their lottery win prompted the couple to move from their council house to a detached home a few miles away in Moorside.
Mr Cone said: “I’m not too bad, but it’s my wife who’s been affected. She sleeps with the lights on now.”
When asked about how little the robbers took, he laughed: “You don’t keep that kind of money in the house.”
Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court heard a police sniffer dog tracked down the trio.
They were arrested as they hid under the loft insulation of the attic in a nearby unoccupied house, wearing only their underwear.
They also found an imitation BB gun used in the raid.
The court heard that their victims would never
‘You don’t keep that kind of money in the house. A gun was pointed at my head. I thought he was going to shoot me’
recover from the ordeal last September.
In a victim statement read to the court, Mr Cone said: “A gun was pointed at my head. I thought he was going to shoot me.”
Mrs Cone added: “It was a terrifying experience.
“I thought we were going to be killed. I don’t think our lives will ever be the same again.”
Jailing the trio, Judge Angela Nield said: “This was an utterly appalling offence committed against defenceless individuals who were sleeping in the sanctity of their own home.
“It will live with them for the rest of their lives.”
After the hearing, Mr Cone said: “I thought they could have got more than that.”
●● Lottery winners Tommy and Joan Cone, pictures in 2003, were attacked by armed men as they slept in their home