Burglars in Leyland ‘grudge visit’

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A Leyland householder was left terrified of going out after two burglars broke into his home to settle a grudge.

Stephen Davidson, 23, of Grimshaw Street, Preston, and David McAteer, 21, of Robin Hey, Leyland, pleaded guilty to burglary after kicking in door panels and smashing a kitchen window at the home of a disabled man in Barn Croft, Leyland.

Preston Crown Court heard Davidson held a grudge against the householder, who suffers anxiety and bi-polar disorder, over a relationship the man had started with Davidson’s former partner.

On February 8, the man was at home alone when he heard noises coming from the back of his property and a voice he recognised as Davidson’s trying to attracts his attention.

The man ignored the commotion but when he heard his kitchen window smash he went outside to confront Davidson.

As the householder chased Davidson, the defendant threw a glass at the man, causing him to duck.

The police were called and the householder was advised to stay at a friend’s house.

However at 1am the man received a message telling him the police were back at his flat.

When officers responded to reports of a break-in, they found McAteer sitting on the sofa and a pile of property including a Playstation and games, piled on the back step.

Both men were arrested but McAteer said he could not remember what had happened as he had been extremely drunk at the time of the incident.

Recorder Ann Vigars, sentencing, said: “This is a burglary which was stopped in its tracks. It had a very profound effect on the victim.

“You need to be in no doubt at all that smashing a window late in the evening and going into someone’s property late at night will have a very serious effect on them.”

In a victim impact statement the householder said he feels anxious to leave his home and his mental health has deteriorated as a result.

Recorder Vigers handed Davidson and McAteer 18 month sentences, suspended for two years.

She ordered both men to undertake two years supervision with the probation service and 150 hours of unpaid work.