A swift response from patrols has ensured a burglar who targeted a west Kent supermarket has been jailed.
At 11.40pm on 23 June 2023, Jake Simms travelled to the Co-op in Pound Road, East Peckham with an accomplice. Once there, they forced their way into the premises and stole two cash boxes before fleeing the scene in a car.
Witnesses reported the incident and described the criminals’ car as a medium-sized black vehicle. Attending patrols worked out the burglars were using a Toyota Prius and were heading towards London.
Working with Metropolitan Police response officers, the car was pursued through south-east London. It came to a halt after colliding with a police vehicle and Simms was detained in the driver’s seat.
A bag containing a long screwdriver, gloves and a hammer that had been discarded from the vehicle during the pursuit was later recovered by a police dog handler.
Simms, of Long Lane, Southwark, Greater London was later charged with burglary, dangerous driving, driving without a licence and driving without insurance.
He pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court and on Tuesday 23 January 2024, the 29-year-old was sentenced to two years' imprisonment. This included the activation of a suspended sentence. Simms will be disqualified from driving for two years on his release from prison and will be required to take an extended driving test.
Detective Constable Andrew Palmer, of the Kent Crime Squad, said: ‘Simms and his accomplice thought targeting a rural supermarket outside the capital city reduced the chances of being caught. Their confidence was misplaced and some quick investigation ensured their getaway vehicle was identified and he was ultimately tracked down by patrols as he sped home. ‘Simms’ disregard for the safety of other road users was reprehensible and it is entirely appropriate that he has been jailed. I would like to thank the members of the public who alerted us when they saw the burglary taking place and this ensured his prompt arrest and the recovery of evidence vital to his conviction.’