Masked raid duo jailed

Nigel Canning

Nigel Canning

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Two Burnley men have been jailed for a combined nine years for a masked attempted robbery in the town in January.

Nigel Canning (44), of Cog Lane, Burnley, was sent to prison for five years while Michael Exton (41), of Dall Street, Burnley, received a four-year sentence at Burnley Crown Court.

Michael Exton

Michael Exton

Canning’s five year sentence also took into account a separate incident of assault on a loss prevention officer in November last year. He pleaded guilty to that and possession of a bladed weapon.

Canning left the staff member at TK Maxx with a cut finger while trying to steal a jacket.

On the day of the attempted robbery, the court heard the pair kicked their way in to the property in Willow Street, Burnley, in January to collect a debt when Canning was armed with a chain with spanner heads and Exton a piece of wood.

Ms Jane Dagnall (prosecuting) said Canning had demanded money from victim Donna Astin inside the house and Exton was outside with the second victim Michael Bolton.

Both men had pleaded guilty to attempted robbery, assault and possessing offensive weapons.

A trial of issue was due to be held in front of Recorder Paul Parry after Astin had claimed the two balaclava wearing men had stood over her.

However, Exton said he never went into the property after breaking the door. Neither of the two witnesses, Astin or Bolton, attended court and their evidence was dropped.

Sentencing, Recorder Parry said the sentences reflected this was offending in a person’s home.

Recorder Parry said disguises had been worn by both men, there had been a degree of planning and both were armed.