Burglar jailed for spate of crimes across Lancashire

Raymond Mercer, 36, of Clitheroes Lane, Freckleton
Raymond Mercer, 36, of Clitheroes Lane, Freckleton
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A burglar who targeted homes across Preston, Longridge and the Fylde has been jailed for 63 months.

Raymond Mercer, 36, of Clitheroes Lane, Freckleton, near Preston, admitted twice burgling a mobile phone shop in December – in which £10,000 of stock was stolen – and burglaries at three homes while on bail over the shop break-in.

He was out between 7.30 and 4am. He returned home to find his bathroom window smashed and, on looking around, he found numerous items missing.

Lisa Worsley

He broke into the home of one victim, Ronnie Lee, in Ribbleton, on New Year’s Eve 2013, while he was out and stole his designer clothing.

In another break-in, he stole cash from victim David McMahon, who had been saving £20 notes to repair his van.

He had three offences taken into consideration relating to homes in Fulwood and Longridge.

Co-defendant Lee Porter, 31, of Plungington Road, Preston, was sentenced to 54 weeks for handling stolen goods from the shop, being found on enclosed premises and breaching a suspended sentence.

Judge Heather Lloyd had to tell the pair off for talking to each other in the dock.

Prosecuting, Lisa Worsley said the door to the mobile phone shop in Lytham was kicked in on December 8. The following morning the same men entered again, filling more bags.

Two passers-by had seen them.

She added: “He was out between 7.30 and 4am. He returned home to find his bathroom window smashed and, on looking around, he found numerous items missing. Designer clothing, a watch, a games console and a passport had been stolen together with a Bush TV.”

She described how victim Mr McMahon, from Oban Crescent, Ribbleton, returned home to find his ground floor window smashed.

Burglars had taken £1,000 in £20 notes he was saving for his van, loose change and a gold chain and earrings. Nine sovereign coins, valued at hundreds of pounds, had been stolen from a bedside cabinet.