A BURGLAR who stole a charity box from the home of a bedridden 91-year-old, after he walked into her bedroom and offered to make her a cup of tea, has been jailed for two-and-a-half years

Alan Aldous was facing a mandatory jail term if convicted again, as a three-strike offender, when he targeted the house in another spree of raids in Royal Wootton Bassett.

The court ordered the new jail term to run alongside a three year eight months jail term imposed in January 2017, which will only add about five months to his time inside.

Hannah Squire, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how the old lady lives in an annexe at her daughter's home on Church Street.

After a difficult night's sleep in December last year both were resting in bed during the day. Expecting a delivery of medicines, they had left the door unlocked.

Late in the morning the daughter heard a noise and her bedroom door opened and Aldous appeared.

He told the stunned woman that he was concerned her front door and the one leading to the annexe had both been open, but she was not taken in.

After telling him to leave she noticed that a chair had been moved and placed against a door.

When she spoke to her elderly mum, who suffers from some dementia, the 91-year-old told her a man had been in her room and offered to make her a cup of tea.

It was then found a charity box containing about £30 has been taken.

On the same day Aldous walked into another house on Wood Street, stealing a tin of cash, letters and an address book, and was caught on a neighbour's CCTV.

Later in the week he twice broke into Charrin's Bar And Grill on the High Street, targeting the cash boxes in the jukebox and fruit machines.

He also broke into Wootton Bassett Tyres taking cash and pinched a laptop computer from a primary school.

Aldous, formerly of The Lawns, Royal Wootton Bassett, pleaded guilty to five counts of burglary and asked for a sixth to be taken into consideration.

The court heard he had more than 20 previous house burglaries to his name as well as a number at commercial premises.

Mike Pulsford, defending, said had the court been aware of the new offences in January, his client might not have received a much longer sentence.

He said Aldous was due for release in mid October 2018, and had been working towards becoming a personal trainer when he gets out.

At the time of the break-ins, Aldous said he was heavily addicted to crack cocaine and was 'desperate'.

Jailing him, Judge Tim Mousley QC said "You said you were walking past and saw the door open and were worried.

"It was part of a deception I am satisfied you had used before. That means this burglary was not as amateurish as Mr Pulsford has suggested.

"The victim was at home, there was significant trauma suffered by the victim."