Unsuccessful burglars jailed after targeting OAPS’ home
APAIR of burglars failed to steal anything at all from an elderly couple’s home and were seen by many witnesses, two of whom filmed them, a court heard.
Desmond Thompson, 44, of no fixed abode, and Kevin Sexton, 40, of Avon Road, Oakley, Cheltenham pleaded guilty to burgling the house in Old Bath Road on July 11.
Thompson was described by Judge Michael Cullum as having a ‘horrendous’ list of previous convictions while Sexton was ‘a third striker’ liable to a mandatory minimum three year sentence because of his past burglary offences.
Prosecutor Nick Fridd said that not only were the defendants seen before, during and after the raid they even spoken to the homeowner when he saw them sitting opposite his house as he went out.
The prosecutor said that one witness was watching from a first floor window across the street and saw Sexton kick open the front door ‘with a single motion.’
The witness called the homeowner, who returned to the property.
Another witness was concerned by the presence of the two men, and filmed them on her mobile phone.
The following day police recognised the defendants from the photographs they had taken.
Representing both men, Matthew Harbinson submitted the offence was not as serious as a night-time burglary when people were at home and sentimental items were stolen.
However he conceded that any sentence would be aggravated due to the men’s long list of previous convictions.
On behalf of Thompson, Mr Harbinson said: “He has a large number of offences, but is not open to, or prone to, dwelling house burglaries.”
Mr Harbinson said his client had been through the prison system many times.
He says he is released with no support, no benefit and no hope.
The lawyer said Thompson was very apologetic for his ‘drunken stupid mistake.’
“He says he would not want to harm anyone, and would apologise to the victims.”
Turning to Sexton, Mr Harbinson said his client had been released from his last jail sentence for burglary in a ‘positive frame of mind.’
But then watching the World Cup Semi Final, he ‘drank alcohol to excess, then took illegal drugs.’
“He used substances and exercised very poor judgement,” Mr Harbinson said.
Setting out how unsophisticated the burglary was, the lawyer said: “There were people everywhere.
“The homeowner had a conversation with them, and they were videoed on at least two mobile phones.
“Two men highly intoxicated not thinking about their actions, that will have dire consequences for them.”
Judge Cullum noted that Thompson had 85 previous court appearances on his record.
“You have over the years committed many nuisance offences,” he said, but noted that he did not have the three ‘qualifying’ previous burglary convictions unlike Sexton.
“This was an offence that like all burglaries has significant effect no doubt in relation to the homeowners,” the judge told them.
“Both of the homeowners witnessed you running from it. That is an aggravating feature.
“Both householders were retired, aged 68 and 70,” he noted. “You went together. You did not achieve anything.”
The judge granted Sexton a 20 percent discount on sentence for pleading guilty and jailed him for 876 days.
He said Thompson’s previous convictions were a ‘serious aggravating feature’ and jailed him for eighteen months. email@example.com
Both householders were retired, aged 68 and 70. You went together. You did not achieve anything. Judge Michael Cullum