Spalding

Butter knife robber jailed again after kitchen blade intrusion

An intruder from Spalding who had only just been released from prison after attempting to burgle a war hero, has been jailed again for entering a home with a knife.

Robert Barnes, 29, was jailed in February last year after he was apprehended by former railway worker John Headington, 85, and his wife Susan, 57.

Mr Headington, who fought in the Korean War, was awarded £750 by a judge after the couple confronted Barnes when he broke into their cottage near Spalding, Lincs.

Dad-of-10 John, who has had two hip replacements, got Barnes in a bear-hug until police arrived after he tried to steal some of his prized model railway collection.

Police found Barnes was carrying a butter knife during the raid in November 2018 and he was jailed for 28 months.

But just weeks after being released from jail Barnes entered the home of another Lincolnshire couple armed with a six-inch bladed knife.

Lincoln Crown Court heard Barnes produced the blade after Matthew McKay, 27, found him sitting in his living room at 11.30pm and threatened to call the police.

Victoria Rose, prosecuting, said Barnes threatened to stab Mr McKay, who he knew as an acquaintance, and also lunged with the knife at his partner, Stacey Goff, after she entered the room.

The court heard Barnes also made threats to the couple’s pet Chihuahua which is called Peanut.

“He threatened to stab the dog and picked him up,” Miss Rose added.

The incident spilled outside on to the cul-de-sac in Anfield Road, Long Sutton, where neighbours saw Barnes waving the blade and issuing further threats.

Police arrested Barnes half a mile from the scene but he denied being present.

The court heard Mr McKay was aware Barnes had only just been released from prison and genuinely feared he would hurt him.

Barnes, of Double Street, Spalding, pleaded guilty to affray and possessing a bladed article following the incident on 9 July.

Michael Cranmer-Brown, mitigating, said Barnes had been drinking and went to the property believing Mr McKay had been involved in an incident relating to a broken window.

“He took the knife with him in case things turned nasty, but never intended to do anyone harm,” Mr Cranmer-Brown added.

Miss Rose said the court would be concerned by Barnes previous conviction for burglary and possession of a blade.

The court was told Barnes has already been re-called to prison for the previous raid involving Mr Headington.

Jailing Barnes for a further 12 months, Judge John Pini QC told him: “You entered this property at night, 11.30pm, and a knife was produced.

“You threatened to stab Mr McKay, the dog, and you lunged at Stacey Goff with the knife.”

The judge also made a restraining order preventing Barnes from going to the address or contacting Miss Goff.

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