More jail time for Tilbury thug who targets old folk

Lewis Onwuchekwa

A JUDGE has added to the length of jail time a Tilbury man, whose crimes include targeting elderly victims, will spend in jail.
Last year the Thurrock Independent reported on a burglary conducted by Lewis Onwuchekwa, 26, at a home in Corringham where he ripped the wedding ring off the finger of his 94-year-old female victim he had dragged from her bed.
In January he was jailed for that and other crimes but last week appeared before a judge in Devon – where another catalogue of crime he committed while on holiday was revealed.
Onwuchekwa left an 80-year-old widower broken hearted when he broke into his home and stole the wedding and engagement rings which were a memento of his wife, who died two years earlier.
He went on to burgle another house where the owner arrived home for lunch to see him walking away with a polka dot bag which she later discovered contained more than £5,000 worth of her property.
He has already been jailed for more than ten years for the Essex offences and a Judge at Exeter Crown Court added four months for his crimes in Devon .
Onwuchekwa, of Newton Road, admitted two burglaries and was jailed for four months by Judge David Evans, who said the sentence would have been a year but for the long jail term he is already serving.
It will be served after he completes sentences totalling ten years and two months for robbery, burglary, and dangerous driving imposed at Basildon Crown Court in January. Those offences were carried out in June and July last year in Corringham and West Horndon.
Judge Evans told him: “In the spring and early summer of last year you embarked on a spree of offending including the two burglaries in this area.
“The first burglary was aggravated because you stole a wedding band and an engagement ring and it has had an ongoing effect on the elderly occupier.
“The second was aggravated because the occupant confronted you as he another man were leaving.”
Hollie Gilbery, prosecuting, said Onwuchekwa was traced by DNA after the burglaries at Chulmleigh on 28 April and Torquay on 2 May.
The owner of the house in Chulmleigh returned home to find it had been broken into through a window and property worth £2,280 including his late wife’s rings had been stolen.
He made a victim statement saying they were of great sentimental value and that he now feels vulnerable and unsafe in his home.
The second victim returned home during a lunch break and only realised the two men she saw on her drive were burglars when she found £5,225 worth of computers, phones, cash missing, carried away in the polka dot bag.
Paul Dentith, defending, said Onwuchekwa travelled to Devon looking for work but turned to crime after his car broke down, he ran out of money, and he fell in with bad company.
He needed money to pay for a hire car and was also using cocaine.

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