Man brutally robbed family at knifepoint three weeks after prison release

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A man who committed a robbery and burglary three weeks after being released from prison has been jailed for 10 years.

Craig Chilman (35) was released from HMP Brixton on December 7 last year after serving time for burglaries.

Craig Chilman

Craig Chilman

Despite being managed by officers from the Integrated Offender Management (IOM) team, and being made to wear an electronic ‘Buddy’ tag, it took him less than a month to re-offend.

On December 28, Chilman entered a house in West Park Street, Chatteris, and claimed he needed to use the toilet.

Despite being asked to leave by the 53-year-old occupant, Chilman pushed his way further into the house and punched the victim to the face several times, eventually knocking him to the floor.

Chilman made demands for money but the victim refused, resulting in him being repeatedly punched and kicked.

He made his way into the living room where he demanded money from the victim’s parents, who are both in their 80s. They told him they didn’t have any so Chilman made his way back to the victim.

Holding a knife against his throat, Chilman demanded he hand over his bank card and PIN. Believing he was going to die, the victim handed over the card and details.

Chilman then left but returned about five minutes later threatening: “I know where you live, if you call the police I will find you and kill you.” After punching him one last time to the face, Chilman made off.

The victim was left with two cracked ribs, injuries to his face, concussion and blurred vision, which meant he was restricted from driving for several days.

On December 30, Chilman was arrested at a house in Chatteris after being identified on CCTV by the team who had been managing him since his prison release.

The footage showed Chilman, in the few minutes he left the crime scene, had visited a nearby garage and used the victim’s bank card to withdraw cash.

On his arrest an old money bag was found next to him full of jewellery, a DVD player and a white box containing a watch. A bank card in a woman’s name was found in a pocket inside his jacket, linking him to a burglary over the Christmas period in St Martin’s Road, Chatteris.

Detective Inspector Dave Taylor, who manages the north IOM team, said: “The Integrated Offender Management team work closely with partner agencies in order to manage, support and deter offenders from re-offending. They work with housing, probation, drug and alcohol services to offer individuals the chance to change.

“Chilman clearly had no intention of working with us to get himself on the right track, away from criminality.”

Chilman, of Bridge Street in Chatteris, pleaded guilty to robbery and burglary and appeared at Peterborough Crown Court yesterday morning (Thursday) where he was sentenced to 10 years in prison, extended for three years on licence.