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Thursday, 25 April 2019
A MAN who broke into a convenience store and tried to steal a cash machine before sparking a police chase has been jailed.
Danny O’Loughlin was part of a gang that ram-raided the Co-op store in Couching Street, Watlington, at 2am on June 21.
Oxford Crown Court heard on Tuesday how the raiders tried and failed to steal the cash machine.
While the others made off in a 4x4, O’Loughlin drove away in an Audi which was pursued by police through Oxfordshire and into Gloucestershire with the help of the National Police Air Service.
He was arrested by Gloucesterpolice officers and charged the next day.
O’Loughlin, 21, of Waterloo Street, Cheltenham, admitted burglary, driving a motor vehicle dangerously, aggravated vehicle taking and using a motor vehicle without third party insurance. He was sentenced to three years and eight months in prison and disqualified from driving for three years.
He will have to take an extended driving test when his disqualification period ends.
At the time of the raid, witnesses told the Henley Standard that the masked gang used a sledgehammer and a crowbar to break into the shop and then used an angle grinder to get the machine out.
Witnesses reported seeing sparks. The raiders left their tools at the scene and the street was covered in broken glass and bits of the cash machine.
Dc Paddy O’Grady said: “O’Loughlin was part of a gang that made an audacious attempt at stealing this cash machine
“When making his escape, he led officers on a pursuit across two counties before finally being arrested in Gloucestershire.
“Although O’Loughlin initially denied any involvement in these offences, given the tenacity of the investigation and determination of the investigating officers, I am satisfied that he has now pleaded guilty to all the offences.
“However, he has never co-operated with our investigation and has refused to name any of his accomplices. I am pleased that he has been brought to justice and will now serve a substantial sentence.
“Cash machines are an important local service, particularly in more rural areas.
“Thames Valley Police is committed to tackling the theft of cash machines and will thoroughly investigate any such offences and bring criminals to justice.”
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