South Tyneside burglars jailed after being caught on CCTV stealing mountain bike and equipment

Two serial burglars are behind bars after helping themselves to a high-value bike from a residential garage.

Monday, 2nd March 2020, 4:21 pm

John Bothick and Colin Cram walked into the property after they noticed the garage door was unlocked while the householder was doing DIY on October 4.

Newcastle Crown Court heard when the owner realised his bike and accessories, worth a total of £995, were gone, he checked a neighbour's CCTV.

Prosecutor John Hobley told the court: "The defendants walked past the address at 3.01pm and look up the drive.

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John Bothick, 43, and Colin Cram, 42, have been jailed.

"They return two minutes later and look up again.

"They return four minutes later and enter the driveway."

Mr Hobley said the householder is now more security conscious and has bought equipment to keep his home secure.

He said in a victim statement: "What could have happened if I had stepped into the garage? There is potential weapons everywhere they could have used to hurt me.

John Bothick and Colin Cram on CCTV. Picture: Northumbria Police.

"I dread to think what could have happened if I had disturbed them."

Bothick, 43, of Robert Street, South Shields and Cram, 43, of Hegeley Road, Hebburn, both admitted burglary.

Both men have long criminal records and have a history of burgling houses.

Judge Sarah Mallett sentenced each burglar to 32 months behind bars.

Judge Mallett said the effect on the victim demonstrates the "fear generated by offences such as this".

Rachel Hedworth, defending Bothick, said the raid was "snapshot stupidity" and added: "He very much regrets the foolish decision to steal that bike that day.

"He is extremely sorry."

Shaun Routledge, defending Cram, said the raid was an "opportunity to get some money".

Mr Routledge said Cram had been waiting for his Universal Credit application to be processed at the time and added: "It was not for drugs, not for drink but to pay his way and reimburse some people who had been helping him."

he said: “Burglary is an appalling crime that sees offenders often bring misery to law-abiding members of our communities for purely selfish gains.”