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Sunday, 23 November 2014

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Cumbrian family's terror at knifeman burglar in bedroom

A family today told how a burglar got into their home in the middle of the night, cut the phone lines then crept upstairs carrying a steak knife.

He fled when their son woke up, saw the intruder in his bedroom and yelled out.

Police are treating the sinister incident in Rudchester Close, Sandsfield Park, Carlisle, as aggravated burglary.

It happened around 2am on Saturday when Ian and Susan McLean, and their son Carl, 28, were fast asleep.

Mr McLean, 53, said: “It was absolutely horrendous.

“The horrible thing about it was that the first thing he did was take a steak knife from the kitchen drawer and cut the wires to the phones in the kitchen and the hall.

“He took our mobile phones as well so we wouldn’t have been able to raise the alarm.

“Susan and I were awoken when Carl yelled out that somebody was in his bedroom.

“The burglar had creaked the door open and at that point Carl woke up and saw this shadowy figure.

“We quickly came down stairs but by that time he had gone.

“We found the knife on the pillow in the spare room, so he must have carried it upstairs.”

The family are now counting the cost. The thief made off with laptop computers, mobile phones, Mrs McLean’s car keys, cash and an Xbox with a total value of £3,500.

Mr McLean, a trainer with Volvo Trucks, said: “If he hadn’t been disturbed, he would have got more. Susan runs a Honda CRV. The police think that, once it was loaded up, he would have driven off in it.

“As it was he took the keys but not the car.”

The intruder entered through a rear conservatory, to which he appeared to have acquired a key.

Police were making house-to-house inquiries in Rudchester Close at the weekend.

They believe the burglary is linked to a break-in at a garden shed in Rudchester Close earlier the same night.

The intruder disabled a security light but it is understood that nothing was taken.

Sergeant Gary McFadden said: “Burglaries can be extremely distressing and this particular crime was unusual because it was slightly more sophisticated than others that we deal with.

“Between 12am and 2.25am on Saturday, a man entered the property while family members were asleep upstairs and conducted quite a methodical search of the property, stealing electrical items and car keys.

“Going to the trouble of cutting phone wires is unusual.

“A team of detectives is investigating and we are appealing to neighbours and visitors who were in the area to think back because they may be able to help us. Please contact Carlisle CID on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

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