'Career burglar' jailed over Gainsborough break-ins

Gary Holmes, 44, was jailed for 49 months at Lincoln Crown Court. Image: Lincolnshire Police.
Gary Holmes, 44, was jailed for 49 months at Lincoln Crown Court. Image: Lincolnshire Police.

A "career burglar" from Gainsborough who fled after he was spotted emerging from the bedroom of his victim has been jailed for a total of 49 months.

Gary Holmes disturbed his victim when he broke into her property on Heaton Street, Gainsborough, Lincoln Crown Court heard.

Kevin Jones, prosecuting, said the victim had been watching television when she heard a banging noise.

She checked her CCTV cameras but could not see anything untoward, but ten minutes later she left her living room and saw someone walking out of her bedroom.

Mr Jones said "Her first impression was that it might have been a family member but she didn't recognise the person.

"He just carried on walking and went out of the building closing the door behind him."

Holmes had earlier forced the lock on the adjoining Pink Orchid florists shop. He took a small amount of cash from the till and then made his way into the living quarters. As he left the premises he took a mobile phone from the hallway.

Holmes was linked to the burglary after a scarf was found outside. Tests carried out revealed it contained his DNA.

The following month Holmes broke into a garage on Morton Terrace, Gainsborough, taking £600 worth of tools.

He was seen acting suspiciously by a neighbour who called police. Officers arrived and found Holmes still at the scene.

Mr Jones said Holmes tried to escape by climbing over a wall but was arrested. The stolen property was recovered.

Holmes ,44, of Victoria Close, Gainsborough, admitted charges of burglary in relation to the florist shop and adjoining living quarters on November 19, and the garage on December 15. He was jailed for a total of 49 months.

The court was told he had 36 previous convictions for a total of 99 offences including a number of house burglaries.

Recorder Martin Hurst, passing sentence, told him: "It would be fair to describe you as a career burglar.

"I don't know why you do it. You know that when you get caught the sentence is inevitable."

David Eager, in mitigation, said Holmes had intended to break into the florists but then wandered into the living area.

"Despite the fact that there was an element of confrontation he did not seek to threaten the victim in any way.

"He has pleaded guilty to the offences. There is very little else I can say."