'Karmic judgement' for Peterlee burglar who was run over while fleeing from woman's home

Robert Jones was run over after fleeing the scene of a burglary in Peterlee. Credit: Durham Police

A burglar who threatened to stab a woman in her own home was caught after being run over while trying to flee the scene of the crime.

Balaclava-clad Robert Jones, together with an unknown accomplice, kicked the back door down of the property in Peterlee, County Durham, during the incident just before 8am on 24 August.

The duo, armed with a screwdriver, demanded the keys to the BMW on the driveway and started ransacking the house when the terrified victim said she did not have them, a spokesperson for Durham Police said.

Continuing the search upstairs, the pair disturbed the victim’s daughter and snatched two bottles of aftershave.

They smashed the victim’s phone before fleeing the house so she could not call the police.

However, minutes later the 26-year-old was run over by a car, causing him to fracture his leg.

His accomplice left Jones behind where he was arrested by officers responding to the burglary.

They found the aftershave, screwdriver, balaclava and gloves nearby.

Jones, of Peter Lee Cottages, Wheatley Hill, spent three days in hospital before being transferred to custody.

The victim subsequently picked him out from an identity parade of men wearing balaclavas and Jones was charged with aggravated burglary.

He pleaded guilty to the offence and at Durham Crown Court on Thursday 3 November, the judge described his situation as “a bizarre karmic judgement”.

The court also heard how a metal rod used to repair Jones’ leg causes him discomfort and he needs help from his cell mate for daily activities.

Jones was sentenced to a total of seven years and six months in prison which he must serve two-thirds of before being eligible for parole after being classed as a dangerous offender.

He will also be subject to three years’ extended licence period upon release.

Acting Inspector Darren Wild, of Peterlee CID, said: “This was a terrifying ordeal for the two women in their own home so we are glad to see Jones behind bars where he belongs.

“We will continue to work to hunt down Jones’ accomplice but hope this sentence gives the victims some closure.”

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