Burglar stole jewellery after disturbing elderly victim in his bedroom at Leicester house
A burglar who disturbed an elderly man in his bed before making off with his sleeping wife's jewellery has been jailed.
Piotr Oleszczuk (33) was drunk when he broke into the couple's home in Aikman Avenue, New Parks, Leicester, on November 10.
Leicester Crown Court was told the male householder, in his mid-70s, was nodding off to sleep when the defendant opened his bedroom door.
The pensioner said: "Who are you?" He followed the intruder on to the landing.
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John Hallissey, prosecuting, said: "The defendant went into the wife's bedroom next door and apparently locked it, to prevent him from following."
Oleszczuk grabbed items of jewellery, including two watches, gold and silver brooches, chains and a pendant, worth a total of about £300, before escaping out of the bedroom window.
The householder's wife, believed to be of a similar age, did not know what had happened until her husband woke her.
In a victim impact report she said she felt "sick" someone had broken in and taken what the judge said were likely to have been items of great sentimental value.
Earlier that evening, the defendant had unsuccessfully tried to break into another pensioner's home, in Plymstock Close, Dane Hills.
Mr Hallissey said that at about 9pm Oleszczuk had noisily damaged a kitchen door, which disturbed the 68-year-old occupant.
He said: "She came out to see what was going on.
"The defendant hid in a nearby bush for several minutes, during which time she could see him staring directly at her."
By chance, the woman's son's arrived to visit her and the defendant ran off.
Oleszczuk, of Lorimer Road, Saffron Lane, Leicester, was jailed for 12 months.
He admitted the burglary and attempted break-in.
Justine Robinson, mitigating, said the defendant had been out to celebrate the birth of a friend's child and drank to such excess he had no recollection of his actions that evening.
He regretted his actions.
Sentencing, Recorder Stuart Sprawson said: "On both occasions the occupants were at home.
"For anybody, whatever age, but particularly the elderly, jewellery is likely to have had a significant personal sentimental value.
"It's so serious it can only be dealt with by immediate custody."