A drug addict who went on a ‘burglary spree’ to pay off a debt has been jailed.
Arsalan Islam, 21, broke into a house on Windsor Road in Great Harwood while the owners were out shopping and stole a £35,000 Range Rover Evoque.
Burnley Crown Court heard how he had earlier tried to break into two other nearby houses on Croft Street and Grimshaw Street after knocking on doors to see if there was anyone inside.
Islam, of Park Street, Great Harwood, pleaded guilty to burglary, theft and two attempted burglaries and was jailed for three years.
Jacob Dyer, prosecuting, told the court how all the incidents happened on December 1 last year and also involved another unknown man. The court heard how the daughter of the Windsor Road victim drove past the house and saw the back gate ‘swinging open’ and a rear window smashed.
Mr Dyer said the burglars had searched through drawers and stole a £500 television as well as the Range Rover with a £1,300 trumpet inside.
The court heard how the car was later recovered but the victim ‘didn’t want it because it had been violated by someone using it’.
Islam was arrested on December 3 after his blood was found on a blind cord near the entrance to the house.
Mr Dyer said before the successful burglary Islam and the other man had been spotted trying to break into two other nearby houses.
The court heard how the Croft Street victim had gone to pick up her child from school when her father heard a ‘crash’. When he went to investigate, he heard Islam shout ‘get out’.
Around £200 worth of damage was caused to a window and door.
The court heard how a man on Grimshaw Street later saw the men go into a neighbours garden and then ‘run off’ shortly after.
Mr Dyer said they had forced open a kitchen window but didn’t get inside.
Isobel Thomas, defending, said: “He was a drug user and had fallen into a drug debt and committed these offences in order to pay off that debt.He knows that’s no excuse. He has to take the responsibility that follows from that.
“He expresses remorse towards the victims and for his involvement in the offences. He has been in custody since December and has had time to reflect since then.”
Judge James Adkin said Islam’s ‘burglary spree’ has had a great impact on all the three female victims.
He told the court how Mrs Makinson is now ‘anxious’ and ‘nervous’ and the incident has ‘affected her whole family’.
He said: “It appears she has got the car back but she doesn’t want it any more knowing burglars had taken it.
“She is also affected when she wants to go out at night to the cinema.
“She doesn’t want to leave the dogs alone because she fears there maybe other individuals who will burgle the property like you did.”
Judge Adkin said one victim, a mobile beautician, had lost ‘a lot of money’ and that the attempted burglary had ‘affected her whole working environment.’
He also told the court how Another victim ‘doesn’t like to go out much any more and leave the house unoccupied’.
Sentencing, he said: “Burglaries have an effect on the individuals who are subjected to it, not that your thought of that at the time you were committing these offences.
“This may cause distress or fear of leaving a property.
“You caused those emotions in all these people.”