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Prolific thief John Connelly jailed after raid on care worker’s home
A BURGLAR with 63 previous convictions has been jailed for three- and-a-half years after he terrified a care worker in her own home.
The victim’s experience of coming face to face with repeat house raider John William Connelly, 29, affected her so deeply she became hysterical when she saw his photograph a few days later, York Crown Court heard.
Nicholas Adlington, prosecuting, told York Crown Court that the victim’s husband was at work and she was alone in the Clifton house at noon when she heard a noise. She investigated and saw Connelly.
Connelly swore when he realised there was someone in the house and fled, but was arrested nearby. He has been burgling houses for 12 years, starting when he was 17 years old.
When he denied being the burglar, police had to ask the victim to pick his photograph out of a file of photos and as soon as she saw it, she had a panic attack.
He was on bail for two shoplifting offences at the time of the raid and had 63 previous convictions.
Detective Constable Rebecca Hughes, of York CID, said: “The three-and-a-half year sentence handed to Connelly is very satisfying and reflects the seriousness of his offending.
“His callous actions left the householder deeply traumatised and it is an experience that she will have to live with forever. I hope that the victim can gain a measure of comfort from the knowledge that the offender has been brought to justice and is now out of harm’s way for a long time.”
Connelly, no fixed address, pleaded guilty to burglary committed on December 17 and one theft of perfume worth £214 from Debenham’s in Davygate in November and asked for a second theft from Debenham’s to be taken into consideration.
His barrister Stephen Grattage said he had been shocked and upset by the effect his actions had had on the care worker and was sorry.
Mr Adlington said Connelly stole perfume from Debenham’s on November 27. But after he had gone, staff noticed the theft and were on the alert when he returned the next day. They spotted him stealing more perfume and he was arrested.