A RAIDER armed with a knife and a garden fork smashed his way into a "terrified" woman's house as she slept and demanded cash.

Lee Jamie Daly, 34, was jailed for more than seven years after York Crown Court heard how he broke into the home where the woman was on her own with two small children in the early hours of April 11.

As she lay in bed, he confronted the woman with a kitchen knife and a small garden fork in his hands and demanded “Where’s the money?”, said Rob Galley, prosecuting.

She had to get dressed and go downstairs where she handed over £50.

“She must have been, and she was, absolutely terrified to see you in her bedroom demanding money,” Judge Andrew Stubbs QC told Daly.

“She is described as being distraught.”

He jailed Daly, of Burke Road, Malton, for seven and a half years at York Crown Court.

Daly pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary.

For him, Julian King said he had a drug habit and a cocaine habit and had behaved out of character.

Mr Galley said the victim thought she heard someone trying the door of her home at 11.15pm on April 10 but when she checked everything appeared to be in order.

Her partner was away from their Norton home, so she was on her own.

She went to sleep with her two young children, but then woke up hearing Daly’s footsteps downstairs.

He had got in by smashing the window of her kitchen door.

She called out her partner’s name, thinking it was him returning home.

But as she lay in bed, Daly came into the bedroom.

He demanded money in a strange croaking voice that she thought he was deliberately disguising.

She told him her purse was downstairs. Reluctantly, she got into a dressing gown and went downstairs where she handed over £50.

As he left, Daly told her to look after her children.

A neighbour, roused by the noise, saw Daly running away with his hood up and came over to help the woman, who was back upstairs with her children in a distraught state.

Police scenes of crime officers later found traces of Daly’s blood on her bed, door handle and the walls of the staircase. They contained Daly’s DNA and he was arrested.

Mr King alleged Daly had been looking for the woman’s partner.

“That he entered and was confronted by her and her children is something of which he is truly ashamed.

“There is no suggestion of physical violence used when he was inside the premises,” said the defence barrister.

Daly’s only previous conviction had been 10 years earlier when he had been arrested for careless driving and failure to stop. Police then found a knife in his car.