Violent burglar jailed as accomplices remain at large

Michael Maughan targeted the homes of elderly residents, reports James Cracknell

Michael Maughan
Michael Maughan (credit Met Police)

A teenage burglar who threatened elderly residents in their homes with a screwdriver has been jailed for eight years.

Eighteen-year-old Michael Maughan, of Great Cambridge Road in Enfield, was sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court last week after being convicted in March on two counts of aggravated burglary, one count of aggravated vehicle theft, and one count of possession of an offensive weapon.

The two burglaries took place on 28th February 2020 in Hermitage Road, Tottenham, and in Wilbury Way, Edmonton. Maughan’s accomplices during the violent break-ins have yet to be traced.

Detective Constable John McGranahan, who is leading the investigation, said: “Maughan, and his accomplices, terrified their elderly victims in their own homes, a place they should have felt safe.

“The level of violence used was truly shocking, and I cannot even imagine what must have been going through their victims’ minds. To target the vulnerable is abhorrent; he has stolen their property and their independence.

“Maughan tried to evade justice by absconding during his trial, however, we were able to track his movements and bring him back before the court.

“He is beginning a lengthy prison sentence which is rightly deserved.”

The first burglary, in Tottenham, targeted the home of an 83-year-old woman and a 79-year-old man. The woman answered the door and was pushed out of the way by the two burglars, both carrying screwdrivers. They demanded property and tried to pull the woman’s rings from her fingers. One of the suspects then removed the man’s pyjama top before smearing fabric conditioner on his chest, causing a burning sensation. The burglars left with a small amount of jewellery.

Later that morning, at the second address in Edmonton, two burglars smashed their way through a patio door while an 84-year-old victim cowered inside her home. The woman was captured on her home surveillance system trying to flee from the two men, and her screams were recorded as they caught up with her. She was threatened with a large screwdriver as the suspects demanded money. After the suspects left with a few collectible coins, the woman was able to alert a neighbour, who called police.

Detectives launched an investigation and established that the suspects had been involved in the earlier burglary in Tottenham. Officers were able to identify a vehicle they believed was used by the suspects and it was caught on an automatic number plate recognition camera in Hertfordshire an hour after the burglary. This car was then found abandoned in Brighton – it had been stolen two weeks prior.

DNA found on a drinks bottle was identified as belonging to Maughan and warrants were executed at several addresses. Four months later, officers stopped a car in Muswell Hill, with Maughan found at the wheel.

DC McGranahan, added: “Despite Maughan’s conviction, our investigation is not over. We are still making enquiries to establish who else was involved. I would urge anyone who has information that could assist to please come forward.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact police via 101, quoting reference Cad 2823/28Feb20. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.