Two armed robbers have been jailed for 16 years each after they held a family at gunpoint in their home and tied them up.
Derby Crown Court heard on Friday, June 16, how Luke John Bonsall and William John Proctor, both aged 37, entered Andrew and Lorraine Eales’s home on Stubley Lane, Dronfield, and knocked Mr Eales out and threatened to shoot one of the couple’s children.
Judge Peter Cooke told the defendants: “The fact a shotgun was used to threaten this family and particularly the children with violence is a significant culpability-factor.
“Serious psychological harm was caused to members of this family.”
The court heard how Bonsall and Proctor entered the rear of the property in masks and held the family hostage including Andrew and Lorraine Eales and their adult daughter, their two boys and their seven-year-old daughter.
Judge Cooke added that the seven-year-old daughter ran upstairs but was dragged back down and the family’s 11-year-old son had a gun pointed at his head and was told by one of the offenders if he moved he would “put one in him”.
The robbers used cable ties to restrain the family and Mr Eales was struck around the head and knocked unconscious, according to Judge Cooke.
He explained the robbers fled with about £7,000 after the family had been forced to open a safe.
The judge added that they would have also stolen two Range Rovers but these vehicles were blocked by a takeaway delivery driver’s car after he had returned to the property with part of an earlier curry order.
Bonsall, of Bowden Wood Crescent, Sheffield, and Proctor, of Magpie Grove, Sheffield, were found guilty after a trial of conspiracy to commit robbery and conspiring to possess an imitation firearm with intent to commit a robbery following the incident in March, 2015.
The court heard how Bonsall and Proctor have previous convictions and were described by the judge as “career criminals” who had escalated into a “different league”.
Judge Cooke sentenced both defendants to 16 years of custody each.
A third co-accused Shayne West, 35, of Vikinglea Drive, Sheffield, was previously charged with the same offences but was acquitted after the trial.