Man jailed for more than three years for burglary - Diss

A burglar has been sentenced to more than three years in prison after targeting the home of a couple in Diss, with one of the victims suffering a heart attack just hours after.

Henry Smith, 28, formerly of Tawneys Ride, Sudbury, now c/o HMP, was sentenced to a total of 40 months for burglary at Ipswich Crown Court on Wednesday (18 January) after police matched his DNA to a crowbar he left at the property he had burgled in Roydon.

A woman, in her 80s, had left her home in Roydon with her husband on the evening of 20 November at around 5pm, returning at 8.30pm to discover they had been burgled. Hours later, on the same night, he suffered a heart attack.

Smith, who previously pleaded guilty to the burglary, had broken into the property using a crowbar, opened drawers around the house and left paperwork discarded on the floor throughout the address.

The female victim states, in her personal statement, that she believes the burglary has had an impact on the couple’s health:

“I definitely think that the stress of the burglary put a strain on his heart. We both can’t sleep; my husband and I go to bed exhausted and can’t sleep for about two hours a night. This means we are both tired during the day. This has changed how we live our lives.”

The added ‘the burglary has ruined our relationship with the house, it’s tearing us apart. We go to bed every night worried that we might get burgled’.

The victim discovered a gold bracelet, a gold watch, an empty blue overnight bag and an unknown amount of cash had been taken, these have never been recovered.

Police examined DNA evidence and arrested Smith at an address in Sudbury the following month on December 20.

PC Oliver Addley said: “Smith targeted the home of the couple and caused significant distress. We hope that the work to bring him to justice will serve as a warning to others that we will pursue this type of crime as we know the weight of impact it can have on victims.”