Teenage burglary gang trio locked up over conspiracy to break into homes in Pudsey to steal luxury cars
Three members of a teenage burglary gang have been locked up for targeting homes in Leeds in order to steal luxury cars.
Harrison Hawkins, Jordan May and Matthew Rhodes were caught after the West Yorkshire Police helicopter was scrambled when 999 calls made by shocked residents in Pudsey.
Leeds Crown Court heard the gang tried to break into houses in the Owlcotes Road area during the night of November 25 last year.
Alex Menary, prosecuting, said a resident on Sunnyridge Avenue received a notification on a doorbell cam phone app in the early hours of the morning.
The device had been installed after the same property had been burgled a year earlier.
A male was seen walking down the driveway near to where her Audi was parked.
A security light came on and the suspect retraced his steps.
He could be seen gesturing to two males that they should leave.
The woman who lived there heard a scratching sound coming from a side door.
She went outside and saw a group of men who ran off.
The victim then noticed that the door handle had been snapped off.
She was shaken by the incident as she had only just moved into the house.
Mr Menary said a high-value Mercedes was parked on the driveway.
Police were contacted and three people were spotted from the air hiding in woods off Waterloo Road.
Police officers arrested 18-year-old Hawkins as he hid up a tree.
Rhodes, 19, was detained by officers on Waterloo Road.
May, 19, was arrested after being recognised from CCTV footage from the area.
All three defendants pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary.
On October 4 last year he was a passenger in a stolen VW Golf which had been fitted with false number plates.
The vehicle was involved in a dangerous chase after the driver refused to stop for police.
Hawkins was wearing a GPS-monitored tag at the time which showed he had been travelling in the vehicle.
On October 15 he stole a motorbike and was identified as a suspect as his tag showed he had been travelling away from the scene at 39mph moments after the theft took place.
Hawkins was part of a gang who tried to break into a garage in Bramley on October 20.
The suspects ran off from police but Hawkins' DNA was found on a pair of bolt croppers left at the scene.
Caroline Abrahams, for Hawkins, said her client was aged 17 at the time of all of the offences.
Stuart Field, for May, said the teenager became involved in the conspiracy after falling out with his family and had a "devil may care attitude."
Shila Whitehead, for Rhodes, said her client is motivated to address his offending behaviour.
She said: "He wants to get a job and be a law-abiding citizen."
Hawkins, of Ashton Street, Bramley, was sent to a young offender institution for 18 months.
Rhodes, of The Crescent, East Ardsley, was sentenced to 35 months, and May, of no fixed address, was sentenced to 31 months.