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Jailed: Luton burglars who left grandfather with broken back and bleed on brain

Roderick McDonald, left, and Stephen Simons. Credit: Bedfordshire Police

Two burglars from Luton have been jailed for attacking an 84-year-old man in his own home - leaving him with a fractured spine and bleeding on the brain.

Stephen Simons, 45, and Roderick McDonald, 52, also slashed their victim's hands as he tried to defend his granddaughter, who was staying with him to support him after another burglary just six weeks earlier.

The masked pair were caught on CCTV breaking into the home in August last year. They ransacked the property, which the victim had lived in since 1965.

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When he tried to stop them, Simons head-butted him and kicked him in the chest, causing injuries which required four months of treatment.

Simons was identified by several members of the public who saw footage taken from the CCTV installed by the victim's son-in-law after the previous burglary.

McDonald was identified after leaving blood at the scene.

The victim's hands were slashed as he tried to protect his home. Credit: Bedfordshire Police

“I’d like to pay tribute to the victim, who was understandably distressed following the incident, but was still able to help greatly with our investigation. He showed incredible bravery and strength throughout the incident and aftermath, as well as throughout the trial.

“We are both incredibly grateful for the assistance of the public, who came forward and identified Simons from the CCTV images we issued on our social media channels. We can’t tackle crime alone, and it was thanks to assistance from the public that we were able to bring the two men responsible to justice."

– Det Con Jason Wheeler

A statement read out in court by the victim’s granddaughter said her grandfather would have "sacrificed his life" to save her and "protect his property".

She said: "That is something that he should never should have been forced to do and it is something that I can never repay him for. It reinforced how much I love and respect him, and also demonstrated his bravery.”