A VIOLENT robber tried to smash his way into a barricaded bedroom using a machete as his terrified victims hid inside.

Following a string of offences, including two house robberies committed on the same night 28-year-old Jonathan Ogden fled to Spain but was arrested when he returned to the UK in July.

At Bolton Crown Court he stood in the dock with arms folded, staring straight ahead, but wiped away tears as Judge Timothy Stead sentenced him to 10 years and eight months in jail with a further three years on licence. He will not be eligible to apply for parole until he has served at least two thirds of his prison sentence.

Ogden, of Grasmere Street, Leigh had pleaded guilty to burglary, aggravated vehicle taking, dangerous driving, making threats with an axe and two counts of robbery.

Simon Barrett, prosecuting told how, on April 9 at around 3am, Ogden smashed his way into a semi-detached house on Commonacre Close, Tyldesley, along with two other men wearing balaclavas, and threatened the occupiers, Ashley Redston and Lauren Prunnell, who had been in bed asleep, with a machete.

The gang demanded the keys to the Mercedes SLK and Ford Transit van that were outside. The keys were handed over and Ogden left in the van, while his accomplices took the Mercedes.

Ogden drove the van less than 100 yards before, high on drink and drugs, he skidded onto a lawn on North Fold Close and became stuck.

The revving of the engine alerted house owner William Jackson, who went outside. Spotting Mr Jackson watching him, Ogden, armed with a machete, got out of the van and ran towards the door of the house, demanding to be let in.
Ogden then smashed his way in through the front bay window and climbed into the detached house.

Mr Jackson fled upstairs and he and his partner, Hannah Anderson, barricaded themselves into their bedroom with a chest of drawers across the door

"At this stage thay had no idea why they were being targeted or what the man wanted," said Mr Barrett.

Undeterred, Ogden hacked at the door, creating a large hole and demanded keys to the couple's Nissan Qashqai that was parked on the drive way. After being told where the keys were Ogden fled in the vehicle.

The vehicles were later recovered, damaged and covered in blood and Mr Barrett said the robbery has had a terrible effect on the victims who now do not feel safe in their own homes. Mr Jackson suffers from PTSD and, on returning from holiday, he and his partner stayed at the airport until dawn because they feared going back to the house in the dark.

Ogden had cut himself during the robberies, leaving blood at the scene linking him to the crimes and a burglary at a business on Lord Street, Leigh on December 15 as well as an aggravated vehicle taking that took place on Chapel Street, Leigh on December 20 and a previous offence of dangerous driving and threatening another motorist with an axe.

READ MORE: Judge praises men who tackled dangerous driver

Knowing that he was wanted in connection with the incidents, Ogden attempted to evade police, even fleeing to Spain briefly to avoid arrest. Upon returning to the country in July he was arrested and charged.

Paul Dockery, defending, told the court: "I have little mitigation. His life was really self-centred. His only interest was the taking of drugs and the funding of that lifestyle.

"The offending was a way of continuing that lifestyle.

"The defendant is a normal young man of his age. You would wonder why, with caring parents, he would end up on this flow of offending. I can't answer that but that's what drove him on - he was besotted with drugs."

Sentencing Ogden, Judge Stead told him that his victims had been badly affected.

"It must have been truly terrifying. The fear, nervousness and feeling of unsafety in their own home is manifest here," he said.

Following the sentencing Detective Constable Brian Johnston, of Wigan police, said: “Jonathan Ogden is a violent man, whose crime spree has now been brought to an end.

“He left each person he came across during his offences absolutely terrified as he threatened them with harm. One incident - which saw him smash his way into a house before hacking at a bedroom door with a machete in an effort to steal a car - was particularly shocking and clearly highlights his violent nature.

“Thankfully his victims will no longer need to worry that Ogden is still roaming the streets, free to inflict misery on the public.”