Last year Horndean Tyres was robbed when a safe containing £29,000 was broken into at 1:00am on the 9th March 2017 following a fake call out for a tyre blowout at the Hindhead Tunnel which resulted in an employee being ambushed and assaulted to gain access to the premises at night.
Jamie Gattrell, 34 from Paulsgrove and Jacob Jackson, 22 of Fareham attached a member of staff from the business with sledge hammers when he turned out to a fake call out and opened the workshop then tied him up before gaining access to the safes and stealing £29,000. They pleaded guilty last year after a police investigation.
The Judge, Stephen Climie, stated that he was considering sentences of 11 and 7 years respectively.
Gatrell was a former employee who was sacked in 2015 following a fight with another employee and knew where the safe was, and how to gain access out of hours. As the ring leader his sentence will be significantly longer.
While the two robbers were removing the safe the employee managed to escape and run to The Premier Inn opposite and raise the alarm but Gatrell and his accomplice (who was only paid £4,000 of the £29,000 haul) were able to escape before the police arrived.
The police suspected that the intimate knowledge of the location of the safe meant a former employee was involved. Mounting evidence including a car used in the theft and phone records between Jackson and Gatterell led to clear proof of guilt.
Gatterell was the instigator and brought Jackson into the theft. He claims that he has a heavy cocaine habit and used the stolen money to pay off debts and as such there is nothing left to return.
Well done to the local police for a good result on such a violent crime.
Horndean Tyres have supported local projects like the re-building of the Horndean War Memorial and as a good local employer with many local employees providing a local service it is good to know that those responsible have been found guilty.