Gloucestershire

Burglary spree pair who 'taunted' police on Facebook jailed

Mason McConnon and Harry Gill Image copyright Gloucestershire Police
Image caption McConnon and Gill were described as "taunting" police by replying to comments on the force's Facebook page

Two men who taunted police on social media following a burglary spree in Gloucestershire have been jailed.

Mason McConnon, 24, and Harry Gill, 20, were described as "taunting" police by replying to comments on a wanted appeal for them on the force's Facebook page.

About 80 burglaries were committed in six weeks in Cheltenham last year and officers believe the pair "were involved in a high number of these".

McConnon was jailed for four years and Gill for two years and eight months.

The force, which has 76,381 Facebook followers, issued an online appeal for the men at the end of October following a series of burglaries in Cheltenham.

But within days, police said the pair were "taunting" its social media channels by "replying to comments from members of the public".

One person was told: "I'll do your house next" while another was told: "Your door will not be left in one piece".

Police said Gill even "went to the extent" of changing his Facebook profile picture to include the caption "do not approach" - mocking the force's warning to the public.

Image copyright Gloucestershire Police
Image copyright Gloucestershire Police

But following a tip-off by a taxi firm, the pair were found and arrested in November.

Constable Ed Garlick, said the men had embarked on a "burglary spree" that had left "countless victims in their wake".

"This was particularly horrific, with around 100 being committed over a short period, in the same areas of town, creating great unease and fear," he said.

McConnon, of no fixed abode, was jailed for four years after pleading guilty to 14 counts of burglary and one count of attempted burglary at Gloucester Crown Court.

Gill, also of no fixed abode, was jailed for two years and eight months after pleading guilty to three counts of dwelling burglary, one count of non-dwelling and one count of handling stolen goods.

Image copyright Gloucestershire Police
Image caption Police said Gill changed his Facebook profile picture to include the caption "do not approach" - mocking the force's warning to the public

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