A BURGLAR who attempted to raid the home of an 82-year-old woman has been locked up for 17 months.
Ryan Walker, 19, of Dewhirst Road, Fartown, left a fingerprint at the scene.
But when arrested by police he denied being responsible, claiming he was in bed with his girlfriend at the time.
Walker, described as “immature”, had previously been convicted of domestic burglary and theft.
He was in breach of a 12-week suspended prison sentence and a community order.
At first Walker denied burglary at the house in Fartown in April but changed his plea to guilty.
His Honour Judge Bayliss, sitting at Leeds Crown Court yesterday, jailed him for 15 months for the latest offence and added two months from the suspended sentence.
He told Walker he would serve half the 17-month total before being released on licence.
The judge added: “Burglary of domestic premises is a blight on society. Victims feel unsafe in their homes. They feel vulnerable, the community feels vulnerable.
“The courts will do all they can, however, to deter burglars.”
Mr Charles Blatchford, prosecuting, told how the victim was woken at 5.30am by a loud bang.
She went downstairs and put the lights on but saw nothing and went back to bed.
The next morning she found that her lock had been snapped.
Police found a fingerprint on the door and matched it to Walker, who was arrested.
He denied involvement and said he was in bed with his girlfriend. He could not explain why his fingerprint was on the door.
Mr Blatchford said that on the day of the trial Walker pleaded guilty.
He claimed he went looking for a party.
Mr Mark Brookes, for Walker, said his client had shown remorse for attacking the home of an 82-year-old woman.
He told a probation officer who wrote a pre-sentence report: “This should not have happened to anyone but certainly not to her.”
Mr Brookes said Walker cared for his sick girlfriend and he feared a long spell in custody would mean she would lose the home they shared.
The judge said Walker was described as “immature” but he now appeared to understand the impact on his victim.
He said Walker “lied” about being responsible and then came up with some “nonsense” about looking for a party.
“I have seen letters from your girlfriend and your father,” added the judge. “Your girlfriend relies on you heavily for support and your father says you have turned the corner and asks on your behalf for one last chance.
“Unfortunately custody is inevitable.”