Widow fought back against knife wielding burglar - and helped bring him to justice

Alex Keltie
Alex Keltie

A brave widow fought back against a knife wielding burglar - and the pensioners’ thinking helped bring the dangerous raider to justice.

Alexander Keltie forced his way into the widows home in Lincoln Road just after midnight on May 2. He forced the 67-year-old against the wall, holding a large carving knife to her throat.

But the pensioner fought back, pushing him away and scratching him in the face, before fleeing to her neighbours.

Police were called, who found the victim’s broken fingernails on the floor - with Keltie’s DNA on them.

On Friday Keltie (29) of Walton Park, Peterborough - who has a string of previous convictions dating back a decade - was jailed for eight years at a hearing at Peterborough Crown Court. He had pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary at a previous hearing

Tim Brown, Prosecuting said; “The lady lives alone, and was sitting in her living room watching TV at 12.30am.

“She heard a knock on the door, and looked at out the window, but could not see anyone.

“She went and opened the door, and the defendant forced his way into the house.

“He pushed her against the wall, holding her by the neck of her clothing. He had a brown handled carving knife that he held to her throat - although the blade was not touching her skin.

“He said ‘I will cut you, I will cut you.’”

Mr Brown said the ‘feisty’ victim replied by saying ‘what do you mean you will cut me?’

He said: “She demonstrated a great deal of bravery and spirit. She pushed him, causing him to stumble backwards and knock ornaments to the floor.

“She then scratched his face using her fingernails. She broke two fingernails.”

Mr Brown said in a statement to police, the victim said she was ‘extremely scared and extremely frightened.’ He said the woman said she did not know what the long term effect would be following the incident, but she wanted Keltie to be given a ‘significant’ sentence.

After Keltie’s DNA was found at the scene, he was arrested, and gave police a statement saying he had been ‘rolled over’ in a drug deal, where he had paid for drugs, but not received them - and had been told the dealers lived at the address.

However, the court was told he no-longer stood by the statement.

Mr Brown said Keltie had convictions for robbery, burglary, theft and battery in the past.

Charles Falk, defending, said Keltie had a long standing heroin addiction, but was working hard to battle his problem.

Mr Falk said: “This is a horrific offence. The defendant has written a mature, heartfelt and reflective letter to yourself about this.

“He is racked with guilt and remorse.
“There is a full and frank apology in the pre-sentence report.”

Judge Stuart Bridge heard much of Keltie’s previous offending had occurred when he was a juvenile - although he had struggled to overcome his addiction problem.

Mr Falk said: “He admits he has wasted his 20s on drink and drugs.”

Judge Bridge, sentencing, said the knife was a ‘terrifying weapon.’ While he said Kelty deserved the maximum credit available for an early guilty plea, he said it was an ‘extremely serious’ case, that would have a long lasting impact on the victim.