Colchester burglar caught by member of the public is jailed at Chelmsford Crown Court

Conrad Penn, who has been jailed. Picture: ESSEX POLICE

Conrad Penn, who has been jailed. Picture: ESSEX POLICE - Credit: Archant

A Colchester man has been jailed for two years and five months after pleading guilty to two burglaries, fraud and driving while disqualified.

Conrad Penn, 46, of Conifer Close, burgled an elderly woman’s home in the village of Bures on May 31 before targeting another property in Ardleigh less than a week later – which ended in him being apprehended by a member of the public.

On June 26 last year, he appeared before Central London Magistrates’ Court where he was disqualified from driving for six months and was ordered to retake his test.

Penn then took out an insurance policy on a Ford Focus on Sunday, April 9, but did not disclose that he had not taken his test.

He was given two years and five months sentences for both burglaries, nine months for fraud, and two four-month sentences for driving while disqualified at Chelmsford Crown Court yesterday – all to run concurrently.

In the first burglary, a woman in her 70s returned to her home in Bures and found Penn in her study at around 11.30am.

Penn placed items in a bag before leaving with a three-figure sum of cash in a Ford Focus. He had smashed the back door of the property to get in.

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At around 8.20am on June 6, a woman returned her home in Bromley Road, Ardleigh, near Colchester, to find a Ford Focus on her driveway.

After noticing a man upstairs, she alerted passersby who apprehended Penn as he exited the property with items of jewellery and a watch given to the victim’s late mother.

Dc Richard English, of Clacton CID, said: “Penn’s actions were brazen. He burgled his victims in the morning with no regard of whether they were in or whether he would be caught.

“On both occasions the victims returned home to find Penn searching through their personal belongings.

“I would like to thank them for supporting our investigations, I understand burglary can be a terrifying experience for everyone involved. I’m pleased that a burglar like Penn has been removed from our streets.

“I would like to give a special thanks to a member of the public who bravely apprehended Penn with the support of other passersby. We are making plans to recognise his actions with some form of award.”

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