Thick as thieves
Reporter: ANDREW RUDKIN
Date online: 30 January 2013
Robbers are outwitted by stolen phone’s tracker app
CARJACKERS who also robbed their victims’ smartphones were caught out when one of the mobiles led police directly to their door.
Ziggy and Patrick Cawley — beloeved to be cousins — carjacked three youngsters outside a McDonald’s restaurant in the early hours of the morning.
They were tracked by police after being given log-in details of one of the victim’s mobiles.
Officers admit without the activation of the “Find My iPhone” app, capture would have been near-impossible.
Ziggy (19), of Rollesby Close, Bury, and Patrick (18), of Bury New Road, Heywood, were both sentenced to 40 months’ imprisonment at Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court yesterday.
The young victims were in a Seat car outside McDonald’s off Huddersfield Road, Oldham, in the early hours of last September 29 when the thugs struck.
The Cawleys threatened the driver with a Stanley knife and forced the victims out of the car, then drove away with their phones.
Officers tracked the GPS signal from the phone and found the Cawleys in the bedroom of a house in Canterbury Drive, Bury.
Vanessa Thomson, prosecuting, said both Cawleys were fully clothed and in bed when officers sent a message to the stolen iPhone 4 — which made a sound from a drawer in the room.
Detective Inspector Dave Massey, of Oldham CID, told the Chronicle it was sensible for any smartphone owners to download such an application.
He said: “Most of them are free. This one was crucial in finding these offenders.”
The younger of the Cawleys escaped a further custodial sentence after pleading guilty to two burglaries just weeks before the carjacking.
Patrick Cawley was handed an exception by Judge Adrian Smith at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court for his “vulnerability” and “psychological” issues. He jailed him for an extra 12 months, to run concurrenty with the carjacking sentence.
The teenager climbed through the window of a house in Cavendish Way, Royton last September 2 and stole the keys to a Ford Fiesta while he owner was asleep. The £11,000 car has never been recovered.
He also stole a handbag from a house in Cedar Crescent, Chadderton a week later from an extremely ill woman who was asleep downstairs, the court heard. Most of the property in the second case was recovered.
Judge Smith told Cawley: “I am giving you exceptional circumstances due to your vulnerability and psychological reports, which are particular to you. If it was not for these factors, these would have been consecutive sentences.”
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