A burglar from Crewe who assaulted a homeowner and threatened him with a knife has been jailed.
Lee Moss, of no fixed abode, pretended to be a takeaway deliverer when the victim opened his front door to him at around 9.15pm on Wednesday 28 August.
After being told that he must have the wrong address as the victim had not ordered a takeaway, Moss barged his way into the house in Bodnant Close, Leighton.
The 41-year-old attempted to bind the victims’ arms and legs together with cable ties.
After the victim prevented him from doing so, Moss threatened the homeowner with a penknife and demanded money.
He proceeded to punch the victim in the face several times and steal a quantity of cash from him.
Moss also stole a mobile phone, two watches and a dressing gown from the house.
As he searched for more items to steal, the victim managed to flee the address, calling at a neighbour’s home for help.
At that point Moss also ran out of the house but he was captured on CCTV and was subsequently identified, arrested and charged with aggravated burglary.
Traces of Moss’ DNA were found on the cable ties that he used during the incident.
He pleaded guilty to the aggravated burglary charge at Chester Crown Court on Friday 4 October.
Moss returned to the court for sentencing on Friday 1 November, when he was jailed for seven years and six months; he was also sentenced to an additional four years on extended licence.
Following sentencing, Detective Constable Kieran Heathcote, who led the investigation for Crewe CID, said: “Lee Moss subjected the homeowner to a terrifying ordeal that may have only lasted 10 minutes but will live with him for the rest of his life.
“He answered the door to a complete stranger who claimed to be delivering a takeaway and ended up being threatened at knifepoint and assaulted during a particularly abhorrent burglary which left him with minor injuries that required hospital treatment.
“It is always a traumatic experience being the victim of a burglary and being targeted in your own home, which is the place that you should be able to feel most safe.
“But what this victim was subjected to was the stuff of nightmares and I am delighted that Moss has now been brought to justice for his sickening crime.
“Thankfully incidents such as this are extremely rare and I hope that the custodial sentence imposed on Moss by Chester Crown Court deters others from committing similar crimes.
“I also hope that it gives the victim some closure and enables him to move forward with his life.”
On top of his prison sentence, Moss was also handed a restraining order.
Chief Inspector Simon Newell, of Crewe Local Policing Unit, said: “This case highlights the fact that you should not open the door to strangers.
“You should use your door chain, if you have one, when answering the door.
“If you don’t have a door chain ask the caller who they are through the door before opening it.
“If you don’t know them and are not expecting them then don’t open the door. They may not be who they say they are.”