March 12 2014 Latest news:
Thursday, December 19, 2013
A burglar who was chased by the owner of a Suffolk holiday home after he was found in a bedroom by her 16-year-old daughter has been jailed for three years.
Lee Healy claimed he had gone into the property in Benthills, Thorpeness looking for friends he thought were staying there but his account was rejected by a jury after a three-day trial at Ipswich Crown Court.
Healy, 38, of Seaward Road, Leiston denied burglary with intent to steal on August 14 and was convicted by a 10-2 majority verdict.
He was given a mandatory three year prison sentence as the break-in was his third offence of burglary.
During the trial the court heard Healy, who was working as a kitchen porter at the White Lion hotel in Aldeburgh, was arrested after being chased by Molly Seighart, the owner of the holiday home after her daughter found him in a bedroom at the property.
Mrs Seighart spotted Healy sitting on a scooter further down the road and grabbed him by the sleeve of his jacket to stop him driving off.
Healy tried to drive away but Mrs Seighart kept hold of his jacket and he came off the bike, said Joanne Eley, prosecuting.
Other people arrived on the scene of the commotion and the police were called. When they arrived Healy complained that Mrs Seighart had damaged his bike and claimed he had gone to the house in question to visit some friends he thought were staying there.
During the trial the court heard that Healy had two previous convictions for burglary in 2005.
Healy chose not to give evidence or call any evidence.
After the guilty verdict his barrister Paul Donegan said his client had two children aged eight and four.