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Birthday bash burgled

Yobs scrawled obscene messages on the toilet wall at a Helmdon home during a burglary in which they also stole the family hamster Phoebe.

They entered the house in Station Road some time between 8pm and 11pm on Saturday, April 29, as more than 60 people celebrated Emma Griffiths's sixteenth birthday.

While there they ransacked bedrooms and stole a host of jewellery, Easter eggs, purses and handbags of both the family and guests.

And their visit traumatised Emma's little brother three-year-old James Gordon, so much he now tours the house locking doors and asks dad Andy if the "bad man is coming back".

Emma's Mum sally Gordon said: "We had my daughter's sixteenth birthday party in the garden and about 60 people were here.

"Everyone had a lovely time, all behaving themselves and there was a really nice atmosphere.

"Then at ten o'clock two girls couldn't find their handbags so we stopped the party to look for them. We couldn't find them but we just thought they'd left them in the garden and we'd find them in the morning.

" Everybody left at about 11 o'clock. A few of us stayed up and as we were going to bed at about one o'clock I noticed Phoebe's cage was missing.

"I just thought one of the kids had moved her upstairs out of harm's way but when my daughter Rosie went to look in her bedroom she found it had been ransacked."

Phoebe was 11-year-old Rosie's pet and the family now hopes someone has information so they can recover the brown and white rodent along with all their other belongings.

Sally added "The police said they'd never heard of anyone stealing a hamster in a cage before."

The plastic hamster house had a pink base and a clear lid. Other missing items include watches, rings and mobile phones but the family is still discovering more missing belongings.

Helmdon Parish Council member and village Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator Cllr David Brookhouse said: "It's horrific that people would do such a thing. It must be absolutely gutting for the family to know that somebody's been in and rifled through the house, through their drawers and nicked their private possessions when they were enjoying a party.

"You read about these things happening in towns and hear about them in the headlines of newspapers and television but you never think it's going to happen in your village do you?"

Anyone with information can call Towcester Police on (08453) 700700 or Crimestoppers in confidence on (0800) 555111.

The Brackley Post - 5th May 2006

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