Wed, 10 Feb 2016
A MAN from Hermitage is among a group of burglars who have been jailed for more than six years.
Stephen Banham, aged 41, Manor lane, Hermitage was one of four men who burgled two shops in May last year.
The gang broke into shops and stole large plastic bins and recycling boxes filled with alcohol and cigarettes.
A Co-op in Finchampstead Road, Finchampstead and a newsagents in Rances Lane, Wokingham were targeted.
Banham was arrested shortly after the second burglary after police pursued the getaway vehicle.
The other three men, Jack Cann, aged 20, previously of Blandford Road, Reading; Gary Smith, aged 33, of Goddard Court, Winnersh; and Brendon Wooff, aged 32, of Mill Lane, Earley, were arrested following a police investigation.
All four pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one man also pleaded guilty to intimidating a witness at Reading Crown Court on 11 January 2016 and were sentenced on Friday (5/2) at the same court.
Banham was sentenced to 22 months' imprisonment (to run concurrently) for both burglaries.
The four were sentenced to a total of more than six years in jail.
Wooff was also charged with witness intimidation after posting photos of a witness's statement on Facebook with the message 'Looky looky the Winnersh grasses" which the judge described in court as a "horrid thing to do".
Senior Investigating officer, Det Insp Emily Evans said: "This is a good result for us, the witness and the Wokingham community. I hope it gives these men time to reflect on what they have done and change their ways on their release from prison."