Burglars beat pensioner with her own walking stick before stealing two Audis
A frail 86-year-old woman was beaten with her own walking stick by masked car key burglars.
Teenager Daniel Leahy was part of the gang who broke into her Solihull home in the early hours of the morning.
The victim, who lived alone and had restricted mobility, was left bruised and shocked by the attack.
The gang fled with two cars which had been parked on her drive – but two of the raiders were traced by police after one used the pensioner’s bank card to order pizza.
Daniel Leahy, 18, of no fixed address, was sentenced to three years detention at Birmingham Crown Court after previously admitting robbery and aggravated vehicle taking,
A 17-year-old, who cannot be identified, was sent to detention for four years and two months, after pleading guilty to robbery.
The court heard that on 5th October last year the victim was woken at 1.15am by the sound of her dog barking and discovered one of her windows was open.
She had a look around the property but went back to bed.
Shortly afterwards she saw the light of a torch on her landing and two intruders, who had hidden when she made her search, burst into her bedroom.
Richard Franck, prosecuting, said: “Both had masks or face coverings. They shone a torch into her face. She was understandably absolutely petrified.
”They demanded the keys to two Audis which belonged to the woman’s son and granddaughter, who had gone on holiday.”
Mr Franck said the woman genuinely did not know where the keys were – and told them so.
“She picked up one of her walking sticks,” he said.
“That was grabbed from her by one of the assailants, and she was hit.”
When the victim was later examined by medics she was found to have bruises to her face and side of the body.
One of the men searched the house while the other ‘watched over her.’
He found the keys and after both left, the victim raised the alarm.
Forty minutes later, police were called to an accident involving one of the Audis which had hit a parked car.
Officers found a balaclava inside bearing Leahy’s DNA.
He had fled from the vehicle and eventually made off with the rest of the gang in the other Audi.
That car was found in Wolverhampton just over a week later with false plates.
In a statement the victim said she now wanted to move from her home and had suffered sleepless nights and flashbacks.
Preet-Paul Tutt, for Leahy, said: “This is a burglary that has gone wrong and turned into something far more serious where an elderly lady has been hit.
“He was not the mastermind. He left that balaclava in the back of the car and there is also evidence of him using the credit card to order pizza to his own house.
“It was not very sophisticated.”
Read more: https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/burglars-beat-pensioner-walking-stick-14596623