Teenager stole from two Gosport homes as victims slept

James McCosh
James McCosh

Vehicle crime spree hits Hayling Island

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A TEENAGER who burgled two women’s homes as they slept is behind bars.

James McCosh targeted the two ground-floor Gosport flats within days of each other.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard that during one burglary a victim got up and caught three burglars in the act – but was grabbed by two of the men before they fled.

Now McCosh, of Gosport Road, Fareham, has been sentenced to two-and-a-half years in a Young Offenders Institution.

The court heard McCosh first struck in Ayling Close as the occupant slept.

Police believe the 19-year-old had got into the property through a ground-floor window she had left open for her cat.

He fled with a TV and other items including a laptop, handbag and alcohol.

When the victim woke up the following morning she found the goods and her Renault Clio were missing and her front door unlocked.

Police later found the car abandoned in Lee-on-the-Solent.

Days later a woman and her partner who were asleep in a ground-floor flat in St Nicholas Avenue, Gosport, were targeted. The female victim awoke and noticed lights coming from the hallway at about 2.30am.

Audrey Archer, prosecuting, said: ‘She rather bravely left her bedroom and went into the hallway area of her property and looked into the lounge. There she saw two males.

‘She then looked into her kitchen where she saw another male standing in her kitchen.

‘She grabbed the male in her kitchen by his arms and the next thing she knew was that the two other burglars who had been in her living room were in the kitchen with her.

‘They had appeared to follow her into the kitchen.

‘They grabbed her by the shoulders and pulled her back, she described in a forceful way in order to assist their fellow offender in getting away.’

The men fled and the woman found a Fiat Marea was missing, along with flat keys and a purse with £10 in. The car was later recovered.

McCosh was arrested a short while later. He said he got into the Fiat not knowing it was stolen at the time.

McCosh pleaded guilty to one count of burglary and one count of being carried in a conveyance taken without consent.