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 Man jailed following distraction burglary


A MAN has been jailed for three years after carrying out a distraction burglary at the home of a woman in her 70s.


Darren Wilkinson, 35, of Sidings Place, Houghton-le-Spring, was sentenced to three years and four months in jail at Durham Crown Court today, after he was  found guilty of one count of burglary following a trial.


At around 7.30pm on March 12, Wilkinson attended the home of 75-year-old Mary Hornby in Cedarwood, Houghton-le-Spring.


Mary answered the door believing it to be her son. Wilkinson, who was known to Mary, distracted her and attempted to steal a DVD player. She challenged him and requested that he leave. She discovered shortly after that her mobile phone and purse was missing.


Detective Constable Sarah Hindmarsh, investigating officer, said: “This incident has been very distressing for Mary and I am pleased that this offender has been given a sentence which reflects the nature of his crime. Hopefully she will now feel safe in her own home.”


“Distraction burglary, especially of the more vulnerable members of our community, is extremely cruel and callous.”


Mary said: “I want to thank the police for their help in bringing justice.”