A WOMAN who suffered a £7,000 burglary recognised the culprit’s jacket from CCTV and realised it was her own neighbour who had robbed her.
Zoe Bloodworth, 32, turned detective after her home was broken into by a man whose face was obscured by a beanie hat but who wore a distinctive Superdry jacket.
The teacher stopped her neighbours in the street to see if they knew anything about the break-in.
But she was stunned when she noticed one of them called Ross Peters was wearing an identical black, zip-up jacket as the man in the CCTV.
Zoe said: ‘It actually clicked as he was walking towards me — I didn’t let him know I knew because he is a dangerous man as well.
‘He was wearing the same Superdry jacket. There was no doubt it was him.
‘When we were talking he acted completely like he hadn’t heard anything and said “let me take your number if I hear anything I will call you”.
‘He looked me in the eyes, shook his head and told me he knew nothing. There was no remorse.’
Zoe then reported the man to the police.
At Luton Crown Court Last week, 41-year-old Peters was jailed for 27 months after pleading guilty for his part in the burglary, which took place in January this year.
Primary school assistant headteacher Zoe returned to her trashed home to find she had been burgled by crooks who managed to get away with £7,000 worth of sentimental items.
They included jewellery left to her by her late grandmother, who died last year.
CCTV outside her home in Kempston, Bedfordshire, captured Peters lurking outside for 45 minutes as a ‘lookout’ as another unknown man went inside and carried out the raid.
Zoe and her sister Stephanie Bloodworth, who she lives with, reported the burglary to police but a day later went out to ask their neighbours if they’d seen anything.
They began speaking to Peters, when they realised they recognised him from cameras outside their home.
‘I went for a walk with my sister to see if any of the stuff was left down the road and I saw Ross walking,’ said Zoe.
‘I even explained in desperation that the items which were taken had belonged to my late grandmother, to which he replied ‘My nan died too.’’
‘I managed to carry on talking to him through fear, it is amazing what you can do when you need to protect yourself.
‘Although I can see why some people might have been raged by it. People handle things differently.
‘He had worked it out, a few days later that I knew it was him because the police were trying to get hold of him, and he kept calling the number I gave him.’
The items stolen from Zoe include rings, bracelets and necklaces, designer handbags, makeup and clothes.
But she and her sister are still living with the psychological scars of the burglary today.
She added: ‘It was my nan’s jewellery, that was really upsetting because she died this time last year and she wanted us to keep it all.
‘I have flashbacks about what happened. I have nightmares about people breaking into my home and it all happening again.
‘I hear every noise, every sound, and at one point I felt that I couldn’t even sit down in my own home for fear of not being ready for what might happen next — I cannot relax.
‘I was affected so badly I was unable to concentrate on daily life.’