A BURGLAR who broke his back when he fell down a well, fleeing from a paratrooper, has avoided prison.
Ashley Musgrove fell 30 feet down the well in Halifax as he tried to get away from Major Andrew Wareing.
Bradford Crown Court heard the 22-year-old managed to ring for an ambulance on an iPhone he had just stolen just hours earlier from a house on Bell Street. Musgrove, who had been drinking and had taken cocaine, was rescued by fire crews when he broke his back during the fall in March.
Major Wareing, 37, said he had chased the suspect towards St Thomas’s Church in Claremount Road when Musgrove jumped over a wall and landed in brambles.
“He tried to slide off the brambles, but disappeared from my sight,” said the major.
“Then I heard silence followed by a bang and then whimpering.”
Musgrove, of Royd Rise, Boothtown, Halifax, had broken into the home, disturbing a sleeping woman.
The major, a neighbour, followed Musgrove after seeing him run away.
Peter Hampton, representing Musgrove, said his client spent eight days in hospital after his injury.
He still suffered from limited mobility and needed help for everyday tasks.
“It’s just this week that he has stopped using a walking stick,” said Mr Hampton.
He said his client had learned his lesson.
The judge gave him a nine-month community order as well as a three-month electronically-monitored curfew between 7pm and 7amt.
The judge said it was a tough order and the alternative was being locked up for up to 15 months.
“I am sorry for the lady you’ve burgled, but I think it is in all our interests that we try and rehabilitate you so you don’t do it again,” the judge told Musgrove.
“If you do do it again I will be after you...I reserve any breaches to myself.”