Search

Highbury burglars who posed as window cleaners jailed

17:13 03 July 2014

The pair were jailed for a combined eight years

The pair were jailed for a combined eight years

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Two burglars who posed as window cleaners to steal tens of thousands of pounds worth of goods from homes have been jailed for a combined eight years.

Darren Spencer, 38, and Steven Ward, 36, both of Highbury, worked together and with other accomplices to trick their victims, who included an elderly stroke victim and an MP.

The elderly lady – from whom Spencer, of Aberdeen Park, stole £5,000 worth of jewellery in October last year – had another stroke just a month after the burglary and is now scared to answer her door.

Spencer, who had previously served three years in prison for burglary in 2012, asked for 10 other burglary offences to be taken into account, while Ward, of Panmure Close, committed both his burglary offences while out on licence.

Both said they stole the goods to fund drug habits.

Sentencing them at Blackfriars Crown Court on Tuesday, Judge Jane Sullivan said: “There was a great harm caused to the victims both in terms of financial and sentimental value of the items taken.

Planning

“There was also greater harm as the victims were at home, because of the significant degree of planning and due to the fact that on each occasion there was more than one of you.

“Another aggravating matter is that many of these offences were committed while you were out on bail.”

Spencer, a father of two, was sentenced to four years and eight months in jail while Ward, who has four children, was jailed for three years and four months.

Judge Sullivan said the burglary in Harberton Road, Archway, in October had been particularly hard on Spencer’s elderly victim.

She said: “That particular lady, as you know from the victim impact statements, had a stroke in January 2013.

“She suffered another one just a month after [the burglary]. She was a vulnerable old lady who is now scared to answer the door.

“As for the items that were taken, some were clearly of sentimental value.

“Some were items from parents and not insured.”

The value of items stolen in the 10 further offences Spencer confessed to was said to add up to about £14,000.

Both were present when an unnamed MP’s home in Islington was burgled in January, when Spencer made off with earrings worth £700 while Ward attempted to distract the victim by knocking on the window.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington News Stories

12:42
Former London Metropolitan University building Ladbroke House in Islington

Mystery surrounds controversial plans for a new secondary free school in Highbury.

12:10
Class War protesters outside Boris Johnson's Islington Home on July 15. Picture: Ian Bone

Over 300 anarchists are expected to march on Boris Johnson’s central Islington home next Friday night.

08:05
The Mucky Pup pub in Angel. (Picture: Google Maps)

What do you get if you cross a comedy club’s pleas for funding with 1,000 passionate supporters? £46,000 and a new pub.

Yesterday, 17:51
Mayor of Islington Cllr Kat Fletcher at Go Islington in Highbury Fields on Saturday. Picture: Steve Bainbridge

In recent months, Highbury Fields has mainly been associated with the almighty row over disposable barbecues. But the tensions – and smoke – briefly evaporated on Saturday afternoon when Go Islington, the council’s huge annual sports day, returned.

Yesterday, 15:00
Tracey and Angel complete their skydive (Picture: Tracey Palmer)

If you glanced upwards over Reading on Sunday, you might have spotted brave Whittington worker Tracey Palmer plummeting through the clouds.

Yesterday, 13:50
Lord Glasman praised Shomrim's work (Picture: Mike Brooke)

An “irate” Labour peer stormed out of court to meet the governor of the Bank of England after being made to wait for almost two hours to give evidence.

Yesterday, 13:09
Islington Council leader Richard Watts outside Finsbury Library in January

Computers will be given greater focus in Islington’s 10 libraries, the council leader has said.

Yesterday, 10:50
Islington Council leader Richard Watts at last night's leader's questions session in the Jean Stokes Community Centre off Caledonian Road

Islington’s top councillor last night came under fire over damp housing - and admitted there are “real problems” with many of the out-dated buildings.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

Competitions

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

£15k prize bundle

Imagine having the opportunity to win an incredible £15,000 bundle of some of the most amazing prizes available. Well, for one lucky contest entrant that dream could soon become a reality because we at MyOffers are offering an incredible free prize bundle that will make even the most hardened person wild with excitement.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now