A thief has been jailed for four years for a series of overnight raids on west Cumbrian homes.

Ross Rimbo Blacklock, 20, appeared before Carlisle Crown Court yesterday for sentencing.

The first offence saw Blacklock target Croftfield Road in Seaton. Tim Evans, prosecuting, told the court: “The first victim was a man in his seventies with diabetes who was self-isolating giving the period of time. He went to bed in the early hours of March 22.”

While he slept upstairs, Blacklock, of The Gables in Great Clifton, took his keys and wallet, valued at £103.

Telling the court of the victim impact, Mr Evans told the hearing: “He said it was the most stressed he had ever been.”

He said the anxiety and stress caused by the raid had been exacerbated by fears over contracting coronavirus from Blacklock.

The second home targeted was on Inner Ling Road, also in Seaton. This time Ross Blacklock had an accomplice - his brother Billy Blacklock, who will be sentenced today.

On this occasion two children were sleeping as the two brothers raided the home and left with a number of items including an ASUS laptop, a Michael Kors bag and a River Island bag. The total value of the haul was £540.

“On the laptop there were photos of her deceased partner, she was fearful she might not see them again,” continued Mr Evans.

The third home raided was on Cape Road, again in Seaton. This time it was Ross Blacklock alone. Two children were also sleeping as Blacklock stole from the property at some point between 10pm and 4am.

Later the next day it was realised a Dr Martens backpack had been taken, along with cash.

“[The victim] had worked hard for the money,” outlined Mr Evans.

“Some belonged to the children and it was testing for her to tell them it had been stolen. Some had been given to her by a friend to pay for a holiday.”

Blacklock was also sentenced for possession of cannabis. All of the offences took place overnight on March 21 into March 22.

Anthony Parkinson, defending, said his client had been furloughed from his job and that that had left him in a difficult position.

“He’s not been travelling around the country doing something positive. Instead he has been mixing with some less positive influences,” he told the court.

“He had so much alcohol and illicit substances he has very little or any recollection of what went on.”

Mr Parkinson added: “The offence was not thought through, it was entirely on impulse.”

Blacklock was jailed for a total of four years.