The Lancashire Telegraph recently reported on a court case hearing for a prolific burglar. Gary Ward from Oswaldtwistle, has received a total of 12 convictions at the age of 27 years. Ward had been sent to jail previously on three separate occasions for the minimum statutory period of three years. These sentences were all for burglary. The burglar started his life of crime at a young age and was given his first sentence at the youth court for burglary, at only 14 years old.
The most recent trial, held at Burnley Crown Court was for a crime that Ward had committed on the night of 18th April 2015. The Prosecuting Officer Stephen Parker stated that Ward had raided a private residence in Roe Greave Road, Oswaldtwistle. Gavin Dunleavy, his wife and two children live at the address in Roe Greave Road.
On the night of the burglary Mr Dunleavy and his family were all in bed. They were unaware of the crime at the time it took place. Mr Dunleavy did not notice that anything was wrong until the following evening, after returning home after work. It was at this point that he could not find his wallet. On searching for his wallet, Mr Dunleavy then noticed that other items from around the family home were missing. These included computer equipment, a handbag, cigarettes and alcohol. In total, items to the value of approximately £1,500 were stolen by Ward.
The Dunleavy’s had CCTV system installed at their address and this showed Ward walking straight into the family’s home via an unlocked door. Some of the property had been dumped by the defendant in a near by bush. After the event, the court heard that Ward had offered to assist Mr Dunleavy in getting the dumped items back. The presiding Judge Tania Recorder-Griffiths QC had stated however, that as 6 weeks of time had elapsed this was an impractical solution.
Miss Recorder-Griffiths QC commented on the evidence that the court had heard regarding the night of 18th April …
“You are only 27 but despite your young age you are a prolific burglar and you know full well what the sentence is going to be. You committed this burglary at night, with young children asleep upstairs.”
and later in the hearing whilst commenting on Ward’s previous criminal activity said …
“This is an unbelievable record. Not only had you only been released from custody for around a month for burglary offences but you then go on to commit this burglary.”
Mr James Heyworth, defending, stated that Ward knew if he were to avoid any further jail sentences he would have to get his life back on track.
After his guilty plea, Gary Ward was sentenced to a four year custodial sentence.