COURT: 'Prolific' burglar jailed after raids on homes in Harrogate

Jamie Patterson. Picture: North Yorkshire Police (s)
Jamie Patterson. Picture: North Yorkshire Police (s)

A  burglar has been jailed for six years after raiding homes in Harrogate to steal over £20,000 of jewellery and treasured family items.

Jamie Patterson, 47, appeared at York Crown Court on Friday after admitting a spate of home raids and supermarket thefts. It was the sixth time he had appeared in the courts as a “three-strikes” burglar.

On August 10, in the middle of the afternoon, he raided a semi-detached home on Hookstone Road after smashing a window.

Prosecutor Rob Galley said the owners, a husband and wife who were out at the time, returned to find jewellery, iPads and other items worth just under £7,000 had vanished from their ransacked home.

Patterson was wearing an electronic tag at the time, as a condition of his prison licence for previous offences.

On August 31 Patterson targeted a home in Stray Walk belonging to couple who were out but were alerted by the burglar alarm.

They returned to find Patterson sneaking off their driveway with a large rucksack containing jewellery, watches and electrical items worth over £2,600.

When challenged, Patterson replied: “Nothing to do with me.”

Patterson, who had a drug addiction, was arrested on September 8 but made no reply to police questions despite CCTV, electronic tracker and DNA evidence from the two raids.

He was bailed the following day, but within a few weeks he targeted a home in Yeadon, where the owner was woken by his dog barking in the early hours of the morning. He went downstairs to find Patterson banging the back door “with force”. He grabbed hold of the intruder and a neighbour called police.

Mr Galley said Patterson was pawning the stolen items in Leeds to feed his long-standing drug habit.

He was brought back in for questioning and eventually admitted the burglaries as well as a shoplifting spree at Asda in Harrogate in August and September, where he stole £300 TVs.

In addition to the six counts including burglary, attempted burglary and theft, other offences were taken into consideration by the court.

Mr Galley said Patterson - who had been remanded in Hull Prison since his final arrest - had a criminal record dating back 30 years and had five previous convictions for house burglaries which culminated in long prison sentences.

Patterson’s lawyer Sajid Majeed said his client’s “appalling” offences were on the back of a drug addiction which began when he was in care as a youth, but he had since “cleaned up his act” while on remand.

Judge Paul Batty QC described Patterson’s burglary record as “shocking”.

He said although Patterson was a “persistent and prolific” burglar, his latest spree was “amateurish”, adding: “It can hardly be said that you are a Napoleon of crime when you burgle a house with your tag on, which enables the authorities to pinpoint where you are.”

Jailing Patterson, Mr Batty said the burglaries had had a “profound” effect on the victims, adding: “Their lives have been changed. They feel vulnerable.