A MASKED burglar who raided a house in Barnt Green with a hammer has been jailed for 18 months.

Former drug addict Justin Nash who has a string of burglary convictions appeared at Worcester Crown Court over videolink on Friday to be sentenced for another burglary.

The 39-year-old was told to 'grow up' by judge Andrew Lockhart QC after the raid at a home within a gated community during which he and an unidentified accomplice made off with a haul of cash, jewellery and handbags.

Nash, of no fixed abode, admitted the burglary at Butterwick Close, Barnt Green, on February 4 this year during which both burglars stole £1,100 in property and £660 in cash.

Michael Conry, prosecuting, said the five bedroom detached house was left secure with the CCTV system showing the homeowner's daughter leaving the property.

Just 11 minutes later the camera captures Nash and his accomplice entering the garden carrying hammers.

"It's clear the hammer was used to break the glass to the rear patio doors to get into the house" said Mr Conry.

The faces of both men were covered and both were wearing gloves which judge Lockhart said showed higher culpability as the burglary was planned, targeted and both men were equipped for it.

The defendant was identified forensically by way of a blood-stained piece of glass.

Mr Conry read out a victim personal statement from the homeowner who said: "This has left my family feeling insecure, vulnerable and has changed our quality of life for the worse."

She went on to say that her adult children felt unsafe at home and had urged her to move, saying they felt the burglars had been 'stalking us'.

Amanda O'Mara, defending, asked that her client be given full credit for his early guilty plea and that he had wanted a prison sentence 'to sort myself out in respect of my alcohol and cocaine use'.

Miss O'Mara said her client did not take the cash or jewellery but had accepted he would be sentenced on that basis, describing how on the weekend of the burglary he had spent all his money on alcohol and cocaine and on the way back decided to target the house to get more money.

She said he was now sober and drug free and had been undertaking courses in prison.

Judge Andrew Lockhart QC told Nash: "Just because no-one is there, it does not mean this is a victimless crime.

"I just want you to think how you would feel if you were in custody now and had a phone call from your girlfriend, ringing you up saying 'a man came into our house and our child was upstairs - they rifled through our belongings and I'm utterly terrified'. Just think for a moment how you would feel."

Judge Lockhart jailed Nash for 18 months.