A WOMAN aged 84, the victim of a burglary at her home for the second time in six weeks, was left traumatised at the loss of jewellery of great sentimental value.
Mold Crown Court heard the jewellery, valued at £10,000, included items which were her only link with her late husband and son.
Neil Peter Crayden, 34, had travelled over from Liverpool to commit the burglary at Willow Street in Overton.
Crayden, of Hawke Green , Prescott, Liverpool, was jailed for 16 months after he admitted the burglary on August 6.
Judge Niclas Parry said Crayden had travelled from Liverpool to North Wales to commit burglary, thinking no doubt that it would be “a soft touch”.
He entered the home of an 84-year-old woman by smashing the front door and he entered her bedroom, rifled through drawers and stole personal jewellery.
“You did not know but it was the second time in a matter of weeks that this widow had been burgled,” the judge said.
It had affected her confidence and left her scared and fearful of what would happen when she left her home to pursue social activities, which were her life-line.
Judge Parry said it was a seriously aggravating feature that not only was her stolen jewellery of high monetary value, it was also of a very high sentimental value.
Two of the items in particular had great sentimental value to the memory of her late husband and to her son.
“They have gone for ever,” the judge said.
“That is the consequence of the despicable act of violating this lady’s home.”
Crayden had previous convictions for burglary but it was his first dwelling house burglary.
Michael Whitty, prosecuting, said the victim had lived at the house for 30 years.
Unfortunately for her, she had been the victim of burglary six weeks earlier although there was nothing to link Crayden with that burglary.
On August 6 she left her home, taking particular care to leave it secure after what had happened previously.
But when she returned she was informed by police officers that she had again being burgled.
They had been alerted by a neighbour who heard the alarm.
He had pursued a man from the property while his wife rang the police.
When confronted and asked if he had been in the house, Crayden replied he had not, but he had said not to ring the police.
The jewellery taken included a charm bracelet, a gold bangle, a ring with pearls and diamonds and an eternity ring .
They were of high monetary and sentimental value to her.
Crayden was arrested following a DNA hit from blood found at the point of entry.
Interviewed, he said he had issues with alcohol, had debts and travelled from Merseyside to North Wales to commit a burglary.
Crayden was said to have told the police which pawn shop he had disposed of the items in the hope that they could be recovered.
He was sorry and ashamed, he had not targeted an elderly person and had no idea she had been burgled before.
Crayden was hoping to sort his life out. Breaking into someone’s home was something he thought that he would never do.