Belfast Telegraph

Burglar whose skull was fractured during altercation is jailed

Belfast Crown Court heard that in the aftermath of the break-in, the occupant went outside to try to find the burglar and retrieve the cameras (stock photo)
Belfast Crown Court heard that in the aftermath of the break-in, the occupant went outside to try to find the burglar and retrieve the cameras (stock photo)

By Ashleigh McDonald

A 24-year-old man who broke into a house and sustained a fractured skull after being confronted by the occupant was jailed yesterday.

Kyle William James Millar was handed a two-year sentence after he admitted breaking into the house in the early hours of September 5 last year and stealing two high-end cameras.

The father of one, from Berlin Street in Belfast, was told by Judge David McFarland that he will serve half the sentence in prison, with the remaining 12 months on licence when he is released.

Belfast Crown Court heard that in the aftermath of the break-in, the occupant went outside to try to find the burglar and retrieve the cameras. He located Millar in a nearby street, and following an altercation, Millar was pushed and fell backwards against a wall.

During the fall, Millar's head struck the wall and he was rendered unconscious. He sustained a fractured skull, damage to his spine and frontal lobe and his condition at one stage in hospital was described as "touch and go" by his barrister.

Prosecutor Simon Jenkins said Millar targeted a home in the Knockbreda area which was occupied by two brothers.

One of the occupants became aware of the presence of an unknown male in the hallway and when he went downstairs to investigate the intruder had gone.

The occupant realised two digital cameras worth £2,500 were missing and went on to the street to try to locate the burglar.

Mr Jenkins said the occupier saw Millar "two streets away with the cameras hanging round his neck" and after being shouted at Millar discarded the stolen goods.

An altercation occurred between the two men which resulted in Millar being pushed and hitting his head against the wall.

The prosecutor said during the incident, three sets of keys fell from Millar's pocket included a set of keys stolen from a nearby house targeted a few days before.

Following a stay in hospital, Millar was arrested and questioned about the incident. He replied 'no comment' to questions put to him, but later admitted breaking into the house at Galwally Park. He also admitted receiving stolen goods - namely the keys he had in his pocket.

Mr Jenkins said Millar had a "relevant criminal record" and pointed out the break-in occurred when the occupants were asleep.

Defence barrister Luke Curran spoke of the "robust" way the occupier dealt with his client, who spent almost four weeks in hospital where he was treated for serious injuries.

Mr Curran said Millar was unable to recollect what happened and was "unable to assist police in the interviews" due to the head injury he sustained in the incident.

The barrister said during his time in custody Millar is "trying to turn his life around" and is attending educational and family classes.

Revealing drugs have "been an issue since his early years", Mr Curran said that despite this Millar has passed all recent drug tests in prison.

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