Former Grantham man sentenced to life in prison for robbing elderly women in their own homes

Clinton Sentance
Clinton Sentance
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A former Grantham man has been sentenced to life imprisonment for three robbery offences involving elderly women – following similar offences in Grantham in 2010 and 2011.

Clinton Sentance, formerly of Grantham but more recently living in Gainsborough, carried out the attacks in the homes of elderly residents in Gainsborough on March 19 and 20 this year.

The 36-year-old, of Tennyson Street, admitted three charges of robbery and three linked charges of possession of a knife.

Sentencing comes five-and-a-half years after Sentance was jailed for robbing a Grantham woman just yards from her home in Castlegate. High on a cocktail of crack cocaine, heroin and plant food, he left the 77-year-old’s face battered and bruised after pressing his boot into her nose as she lay stricken on the ground.

In another crime targeting the vulnerable, he burgled the home of an 89-year-old woman as she slept in Winchester Road, Grantham, in August 2010.

On this latest case, senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Mark Kirwan, of Lincolnshire Police, said: “This is a man who committed three extremely serious offences in targeting elderly residents who lived alone in their homes.

“Over two days in March, Clinton Sentence forced his way into the properties of a 75-year-old man, a 78-year-old lady and an 88-year-old lady. He proceeded to tie them up to prevent them from being able to raise alarms and threatened them with a knife in an attempt to steal from them. The victims did sustain injuries in what were deeply disturbing incidents that they never should have had to endure.

“I wholeheartedly agree with Judge’s comments when he said these crimes ‘could have resulted in the deaths of one, if not all of the victims’.

“It was clear from the outset that we had to work relentlessly until this heartless individual was identified and arrested. We committed extra resources and worked around the clock to safeguard the local community and thankfully caught him shortly after the third offence.

“This criminal behaviour was despicable and exceptional in its brutality. The victims have been extremely traumatised by these events but have shown incredible bravery and strength during the course of our investigation. I hope on the back of this significant sentence, they can be reassured that Clinton Sentance will be off the streets for a very long time and they can move forward with their lives.”

Judge Michael Heath, passing sentence, told Sentance: “These offences and their circumstances were outrageous and chilling.

“What you did could have resulted in the death of any or all of your victims because they could have had a stroke or a heart attack as a result of the terrifying experiences that you subjected them to. What happened to them will always remain with them.

“The sentence is life with a minimum of 10 years. I make this clear to the public that this is not a sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment.

“It is a sentence of life imprisonment and you will not be released unless and until you have served 10 years. You may or may not be released at that stage. That will be a matter for the Parole Board.”

Sentance will serve a minimum of 10 years before he can be considered for parole.