Teenagers detained after air pistol raid

TWO teenagers who took part in a “gang raid” at an Ipswich house during which an air pistol was fired have been sentenced to periods of detention.

TWO teenagers who took part in a “gang raid” at an Ipswich house during which an air pistol was fired have been sentenced to periods of detention.

The 16-year-old youths had gone to the flat of Peter Ralph in Cemetery Road, Ipswich in April with other youths, one of whom was armed with an air pistol, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

During the robbery Mr Ralph was threatened by the intruders who left with property valued at £500 said Michael Crimp, prosecuting.

One of the youths, who admitted robbery was sentenced to a 12 month detention and training order and the other 16-year-old, who was found guilty of robbery after a trial in July, was sentenced to an 18 month detention and training order.

Sentencing the youths, who cannot be identified because of their age, Judge Peter Thompson said they had taken part in a “gang raid”.

The court heard that Mr Ralph had been at his home on the evening in question and had answered a knock at his door.

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When he opened the door the gang forced its way in and at one stage an air pistol was discharged, said Mr Crimp.

Joanne Eley for one of the youths said he had entered the premises 10 minutes after the rest of the gang and had not been armed with a weapon.

Roger Thomson for the other youth said his client had pleaded guilty at an early stage and had not threatened Mr Ralph.

The court heard that a 17-year-old youth had been given a three year custodial sentence in May for his part in the robbery.