Leeds pensioner found burglars asleep in her spare bedroom

Tanya Elliott was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to take part in a 20-month rehabilitation programme after a Leeds pensioner found her and an unknown man asleep in her spare bedroom
Tanya Elliott was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to take part in a 20-month rehabilitation programme after a Leeds pensioner found her and an unknown man asleep in her spare bedroom
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A pensioner woke up on New Year’s Day to find her home had been broken into and two burglars asleep in her spare bedroom.

Tanya Elliott was wearing the victim’s dressing gown and was in bed with a man at the property in Seacroft.

Leeds Crown Court heard the 67-year-old woman was “absolutely terrified” when she made the discovery on January 1, 2016.

A concrete block had been thrown through the patio window and there was glass everywhere.

The court heard the woman has health problems and uses breathing apparatus to help her sleep.

She went into the spare bedroom of the property on Easdale Road at 8am and found Elliott, 32, and the unknown man in bed.

The pair immediately leapt up and the man picked up a hammer before leaving the property.

Carmel Pearson, prosecuting, said: “The defendant did not leave as quickly but she did follow.”

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The victim was helped by a neighbourhood watch volunteer who heard the disturbance.

The pair are thought to have broken into the property around 7am.

A woman was seen outside and heard to say “get me in it’s freezing” before there was a sound of breaking glass.

Elliott was arrested after her blood was found at the scene.

She was interviewed and said she could not remember the incident.

Elliott told officers she had been to a party and believed her drink may have been spiked.

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She refused to name the man she had been in bed with.

Elliott, of Poole Road, Cross Gates, pleaded guilty to burglary.

Michael Miller, mitigating, said the offence was unusual as the break-in had been carried out to get shelter from the cold rather than for financial gain.

Mr Miller said Elliott did not realise the house was occupied at the time of the burglary.

He added that Elliott had three children and had not been in trouble in the three years since the offence.

Elliott was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to take part in a 20-month rehabilitation programme.

Judge Robin Mairs said: “This was a terrifying experience for this relatively elderly woman.”

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