Two men jailed following Runcorn Archery club burglary
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Two men from Runcorn have been sentenced after admitting the burglary of an archery club in the town.
Michael Wigley, 33, from Cooper Street, Runcorn admitted burglary at an earlier hearing and appeared at Chester Crown Court on 15 September to be sentenced to three years in prison.
Jamie Bennett, 31, from The Knoll Runcorn also admitted burglary at an earlier hearing and was sentenced to three years in prison.
This followed the sentencing of three teenagers in March this year for their involvement on the night.
Connor Crawley, of Fallowfield, Runcorn, 19, was sentenced to 10 months imprisonment suspended for 18 months after pleading guilty to burglary.
Robert Lingham, of Pitt Street, St Helens, 20, was sentenced to 15 months detention after pleading guilty to burglary.
Daniel Henderson, of Wheatlands, Runcorn, 20, was sentenced to 27 months detention after pleading guilty to burglary and an affray unconnected to the incident.
All were given a restraining order to prevent them approaching the Archery club.
At 7pm on Monday 22 April 2019 (Easter Monday), the owner of The Archery Club based at the Woodlands Play centre, had just finished mowing the lawn and left the building locked and secured.
At around 10pm that evening the premises was approached by eight people. They broke in and CCTV coverage from inside shows them searching the place, removing thousands of pounds of Archery equipment, attempting to gain entry to a safe and helping themselves to drinks from in the fridge. One of the offenders was also seen carrying a petrol can. The CCTV hard drive was removed by them and later found discarded in the grounds of the club along with expensive archery equipment and empty drinks bottles. The building was also set alight at some point causing extensive damage.
DC Dawn Taylor said: “The items stolen and damage to the building totalled £76,620. Due to the extent of the damage, the victim was no longer able to run the club from the premises - but thankfully he has since been able to fix the damage and is back up and running.
“The group denied any involvement in the burglary at first, but our evidence including DNA from drinks bottles discarded at the scene and CCTV put them in the Club that night. Due to the overwhelming evidence they pleaded guilty and are now facing the consequences of their reckless behaviour.”