Christmas in jail for burglar who stole jewellery belonging to Takeley woman who had just died

PUBLISHED: 16:50 18 December 2015 | UPDATED: 16:50 18 December 2015

Archant

A burglar who stole sentimental jewellery belonging to a Takeley woman just two days after she had died will spend Christmas in jail.

Family man and plumber Perry Trotman, 29, of Hitchin Close, Romford, was jailed for two years by a judge at Chelmsford Crown Court today (Friday). The court was told that he had driven and broke into the home of Roy Stanley in Garnetts, Takeley, on March 7, 2014.

The two co-defendants also burgled a house in Woodgates End, Broxted, later the same day and stole a gold Zenith watch, worth £12,000 belonging to Vincent Benito.

The court heard that Mr Stanley’s partner had died two days before the house was ransacked during the morning and it was her jewellery which was taken.

Prosecutor Jamie Sawyer said Mr Stanley couldn’t put a value on the items taken.

Suspicious neighbours noted part of the registration of a black VW Golf.

“Police stuck in traffic in Stansted Mountfitchet at 1.15pm saw the black Golf travelling in the opposite direction and stopped it. Trotman was driving and two others were inside. One ran off,” said the prosecutor.

The watch was found under the car seat.

Trotman pleaded guilty to burglary of the house in Garnetts and was jailed for 18 months. He also admitted handling the watch and was jailed for a further six months, to run consecutively.

He claimed he didn’t know from the start that the other two were out burgling and that he never went into either property.

Judge Anthony Goldstaub QC told Trotman: “Burglary is a serious crime which strike at the security and sense of wellbeing of the residents and is deplored.”

He said the sentimental jewellery was irreplaceable and added: “Moreover the householder was recently bereaved, he was bereft of his partner and it was her jewellery which was taken.

“You may not have entered the property yourself but you provided the transport without which the burglary couldn’t have taken place. You have to accept full moral and legal responsibility for what happened.”

Trotman was visibly upset in the dock as he was jailed as were family members present.

As the judge turned to them and said “I’m sorry the family have to suffer”, the defendant’s wife left, murmuring “Happy Christmas to you too”.

The court heard that Trotman had been on a ten-hour a day curfew since March 2014 which meant his three children had not been away on holiday and the family’s life had also been limited by his restricted liberty for nearly two years.

Mitigating, Evelyn Hicks said Trotman “realised at some point what was happening and didn’t want any more part of it”.

One of the others involved was a 16-year-old youth from Romford who was dealt with at the Youth Court. The other co-defendant, a third-strike burglar, was jailed for 32 months at an earlier hearing, said the prosecutor.

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