Burglar who held gun to head of victim is jailed for 15 years
- Credit: Met Police
A 23-year-old man who robbed a man of his car at gunpoint before burgling his home and putting his family members through "a terrifying ordeal" has been jailed for 15 years.
Tye Parker, who was 19 at the time of the offences, was part of a gang of three men who stopped a white Mercedes in Colchester on February 19, 2019, Ipswich Crown Court heard.
The gang were in a black hatchback vehicle and cut the Mercedes off after driving out of a side road.
The victim noticed a handgun was being pointed at him and three men then got out of the hatchback and made demands that the victim open the door.
He was hit over the head with the handle of the gun before managing to escape, and the trio stole the Mercedes, an iPhone and the victim's shoes.
Having obtained details of the victim's address, which were in the car, the group then made their way to Dagenham to carry out a burglary of the property.
The victim's family were awoken by the sound of a loud bang and people coming up the stairs around 1.35am, the court heard.
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Parker, who had a scarf covering part of his face, was armed with a handgun, while two others - who have not been identified - were armed with knives.
Parker held the gun to the head of one victim and pulled the trigger but the weapon just clicked, the court heard.
After learning the police had been called, the gang fled and several boxes were taken.
Judge David Pugh described the aggravated burglary as a "terrifying ordeal".
Parker then made demands of £10,000 to a man for the release of a woman, from Ipswich, who had not actually been kidnapped.
Parker, of Burr Close, Harwich, was found guilty of robbery, aggravated burglary and blackmail in March following a five-week trial.
He was acquitted of two further charges of false imprisonment, and an offence of kidnap by the jury.
The court heard he had no previous convictions.
Michael Stradling, mitigating, asked Judge Pugh to take into account his age at the time and his level of maturity.
He said Parker has a job selling high end cars with his godfather to go back to following his release from prison.
Judge Pugh jailed Parker for a total of 15 years, with consecutive sentences of four years for the robbery, nine years for the aggravated burglary and two years for blackmail.
He will have to serve two thirds of that sentence in custody before his release on licence.
At the end of the hearing, Judge Pugh also praised Suffolk Constabulary DS Chloe Booty for her work on the complex case.
Speaking after the sentencing, DS Booty said: "This case is a prime example of how serious criminals with links to other areas of the country see fit to commit serious acts of criminality in Suffolk - hopefully this will serve as a lesson that Suffolk police take these matters seriously and deal with them robustly.
“This trial has taken a long time and been a lot of work for all involved including numerous witnesses and victims who have been brave enough to come forwards and support police in their investigation.
"I hope now that the victims and witnesses can continue on in their lives with their mind put at ease that a dangerous perpetrator will now face a period of time in prison.”