“Professional night-time burglar” from west Suffolk jailed for six years

Stephen Mainwaring has been jailed for six years for a string of burglaries across west Suffolk

Stephen Mainwaring has been jailed for six years for a string of burglaries across west Suffolk - Credit: Archant

A professional night-time burglar who stole property worth £290,000 during break-ins at 35 houses in west Suffolk has been jailed for six years.

Stephen Mainwaring targeted unoccupied detached houses in rural villages while the owners were out or on holiday during a two year spate of offending, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Several of the items stolen by Mainwaring were of great sentimental value and included an engagement ring, jewellery belonging to a homeowner’s late wife and family heirlooms. He also stole three cars and a motorbike as well as a shotgun and cartridges after forcing open a secure gun cabinet at one of the burgled properties, said Michael Crimp, prosecuting.

Jailing Mainwaring for a total of six years Judge Rupert Overbury described him as a “professional night-time burglar” and said he had caused “untold pain, anguish and heartache” to the victims of the burglaries.

Mainwaring, 51, of Shepherd’s Grove Industrial Estate, Stanton, admitted five burglaries at properties in Great Barton, Stowlangtoft, Norton and Ixworth, theft of two cars and a motor bike and possessing a shotgun and ammunition without a certificate.


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He asked for 31 offences to be taken into consideration including 30 burglaries at Conyers Way, Tewkesbury Place, Livermore Road, School Road, Woodland Place and The Coppice in Great Barton, Upthorpe Road, Duke Street, Michaelhouse Way, Mickfields, Barningham Road and Dale Road in Stanton, Sandy Lane, Barningham, Micklesmere Drive and Thistledown Drive in Ixworth, Norton Road and Flatts Lane in Tostock, Low Street, Bardwell, Bury Road, Market Weston, Church View, Stowlangtoft, Fen Road, Pakenham, Heath Road, Norton and Culford Road in Ingram. The burglaries were committed between February 2015 and August this year.

The court heard Mainwaring was arrested at his home after his DNA was discovered on tools left at one of the burglaries. Police recovered two of the stolen cars and a significant amount of stolen property including a shotgun from Mainwaring’s home.

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Steven Dyble for Mainwaring said his client had spent several days driving around west Suffolk with police officers identifying properties he had burgled.

He said that without his client’s admissions there was no evidence to link him to those burglaries.

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