Jail for burglar who launched night-time raid on country house

Jail for burglar who launched night-time raid on country house

By David Parker | 05/08/2020

Jail for burglar who launched night-time raid on country house
James Wake


A BURGLAR who was part of an organised gang that stole cash and vehicles from a house in the country has been jailed.

James Wake (20), of Kirkstead Road, Blackburn, stole a car and a van during a night-time raid on a house on Kirk Edge Road, Sheffield, on May 25.

Wake also swiped the hard drive of the family’s security camera in an attempt to cover his tracks, Sheffield Crown Court heard on Tuesday.

Ms Louise Gallagher, prosecuting, said: “It was 2.45 in the morning when the victim was awoken by the sound of his dog barking in the conservatory, which was not usual behaviour.

“He got up to investigate and he saw his son’s vehicle being driven off the driveway.”

Ms Gallagher said the vehicle, a Volkswagen Golf, was worth about £16,000, and had sunglasses, a phone charger and a coat inside it.

“He saw his Volkswagen Transporter, which was taken by a second burglar, but he didn’t see the driver,” said Ms Gallagher.

The victim then saw a third vehicle drive past on Kirk Edge Road, trailing the other two.

The Transporter was worth about £16,000 and contained a golf bag worth about £2,000, Ms Gallagher said.

The victim discovered the burglars had opened a barn on his property and had gained access to a garage.

The CCTV hard drive, worth £1,200, had been taken from the garage, said Ms Gallagher.

He found that the system had stopped recording five days earlier which suggested the attack had been preplanned.

The burglars also swiped £2,000 in cash from a safe at a dentistry business which was attached to the house.

They took about £40,000 worth of the items in total.

Wake targeted the house in Sheffield while on bail for burgling a house on Barber Wood Road, Blackburn, in December.

He pleaded guilty to two offences of burglary, driving without a licence and driving without insurance at a previous hearing at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court.

Mitigating, Ms Joy Merriam said Wake had been under instruction from someone who had threatened him and his family over a drug debt.

She said Wake had previously been a hard-working and industrious young man who would have had a job to go to had he been spared a prison sentence.

Sentencing Wake to 18 months, Judge Graham Reeds said the offence was so serious it could only merit immediate imprisonment.

He said: “This was a night-time burglary of a remote property by an organised crime gang getting away with high-value items.”

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