A family were forced to cancel their holiday after a teenage burglar broke into their home and stole their car the day before. Aaron Gee jumped over his neighbours’ fences as he ran from police in an attempt to avoid arrest, Minshull Street Crown Court heard.
The judge was pleased to hear 18-year-old Gee had since turned his life around as she allowed him to walk free from court today (May 23) – but warned he could have been locked up for the theft, which left his victims feeling ‘unsafe in their own home’. The court heard that Gee, from Blackley, broke into his victims’ Middleton home back in September 2020, when he was 16.
Prosecuting, Emma Clarke said that on September 4, the owner went to bed having locked his home windows and with his Ford Kuga car parked on the driveway. But at 3.45am the following morning, police were notified of a burglary and the family were woken up by a call from officers.
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Ms Clarke said the victim’s wife went outside to discover the car was no longer there, before the family discovered their downstairs window had been opened. The court heard that police identified Gee from fingerprints left at the scene and later visited his home from him to arrest him, where he was ‘seen attempting to escape by jumping over neighbours’ fences’.
Ms Clarke added: “[The family] have been left feeling as though they have lost the privacy of their own home.” She went on to tell the court that the victims had been due to drive to Wales for a holiday the next day, but were forced to cancel it following the burglary .
She added: “It was likely the offense was committed with impulse but nevertheless [it was] a serious one.”
Gee pleaded guilty to burglary at an earlier court appearance last month.
Defending, Brendan O’Leary admitted his client had ‘not matured’ at the time of his offence. However, he insisted that in the time since the burglary he had been ‘offence free’ while he had completed his first year of a multi-skills course at Manchester City College.
I added: “[Gee] has left behind the peers he was with at that time. He has sought to distance himself and not repeat the behavior that he engaged with.”
Judge Tina Landale welcomed the personal progress Gee had made since the offence, but insisted it had been ‘very serious’. “For a family to wake up and find that some stranger has been inside their home and taken their car keys with the purpose of stealing the car is something that is really shocking and can be devastating,” she said.
“[The victim] felt he had lost his privacy. They felt unsafe in their own home, they lost their holiday because they had to cancel that, so it had a real impact on them.
“If you had not been a young man – a boy at the time – and there had not been these two years of staying out of trouble then I would have sent you into custody. But you have done your best to put things right.”
Gee, of Victoria Avenue, Blackley, was handed an 18-month community order with 150 hours of unpaid work and 15 days’ rehabilitation.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.