Prison Sentences after Gang Raids

January 1965

South Yorkshire Times January 16th 1965

Prison Sentences after Gang Raids

Eleven young men from Conisbrough and Edlington and one from Denaby pleaded guilty at Doncaster West Riding Court on Friday to what Det. Chief Insp. W. L. Cockcroft said were “offences of some magnitude involving considerable property”.

Twenty-eight charges were admitted, most of them breaking and entering and petty theft.

Thomas Rowley (22), miner, of Drakelands Lane, Carl Davies (23), labourer, of Otley Close, and Peter Grace (21), labourer, of Dearne Street, all of Conisbrough, were charged with jointly breaking and entering a building store and stealing £26 worth of copper and jointly stealing £24 10s worth of glass.

Rowley, Davies and John Stanley (26), electrician’s mate, of Tait Avenue, Edlington, admitted stealing copper worth £45. Grace, Rowley, his brother John Rowley (21), miner, of Drakelands Ave., Conisbrough, Terence Benfold (24), machinist, of Daylands Ave., Conisbrough, and 22-year-old Peter Sykes, of Harthill Road, Conisbrough, admitted jointly breaking and entering a store and stealing tools worth £30.

Grace, Davies, Thomas Rowley and Colin Benfold (22), labourer, of Daylands Avenue, Conisbrough, pleaded guilty to together stealing tools value £6 13s from a Conisbrough farm. Stanley and another electrician, 28-year-old Kenneth Perkins of Violet Ave., admitted shop breaking and stealing cigarettes and other property value £140. Perkins further admitted a charge of stealing £360 worth of spirits after breaking into a Doncaster Co-operative store.

John Rowley and James Thomas (27), miner, of Doncaster Road, Denaby, were charged with stealing a car battery worth £2 from Jackson’s garage, Conisbrough. John Rowley and Sykes admitted the theft of a £16 transistor radio. Colin Benfold further admitted stealing a jacket worth £8 from a man injured in a road accident.


Two Conisbrough men, George Shaw (42), miner, of Dixon Road and Malcolm MacDonald (24), mechanic, of Daylands Avenue, were accused of receiving some of the stolen property worth £202 7s in all. All asked for other offences to be considered.

Thomas Rowley and Davies were gaoled for a year, Grace, Stanley, Perkins and John Rowley for six months, and Peter Sykes for three months. Fines of £20 were imposed on Shaw, Terence Benfold, MacDonald and Thomas. Colin Benfold was fined £35.

The Chairman, Mr. F.C. Robinson, said: “This is one of the worst lot of cases I have ever adjudicated. It was the work of a gang. You entered other people’s premises and stole anything you wanted.”