Raided as they slept; Brazen thieves creep around bedrooms.
BRAZEN thieves ransacked a taxi driver's home and stole precious possessions and cash lying just inches away from where he was sleeping.
George Petch was sound asleep as a gang rifled through his wardrobes and fled with his cash bag, laptop and mobile phone during the night-time raid.
Even the couple's 12-year-old arthritic British bulldog, Jack, was undisturbed by the thieves who tiptoed around his 82-year-old mother-in-law's bed to search cupboards.
Today, as detectives vow to catch those responsible and step up their investigation, George said his home in Earsdon Road, Kenton, Newcastle, had been targeted by the burglars just hours before his dad's funeral.
Father-of-two George, 61, said: "They took my cash bag, which was 10 inches away from my head. It's terrifying to think that someone can come in and just take things from your cupboards while you're asleep.
"It's quite frightening - they were in the same room where my mother-in-law was sleeping. They went through her bedroom opening drawers and taking things.
"My dad was getting buried the next day but I couldn't go because I had to arrange everything with the police.
"I was too upset to go to the funeral - my mother-in-law was here, so I stayed with her because she was still in shock.
"We had shut the doors but we didn't put the second lock on. The police have said they just popped the Yale lock.
"I must have disturbed them - they left the doors open, and it looks like they were going to take my car because they had moved my keys."
George's dad, retired Royal Mail worker Ray Petch, 83, died of natural causes on August 23 at his Kenton Hall care home, on Kenton Lane, Gosforth.
He was due to be buried at noon last Wednesday. But that morning, at around 2.30am, braiders targeted George's home on Earsdon Road, Kenton, Newcastle, and fled with a haul of treasured possessions. Now George is warning others not to fall prey to burglars. He believe the burglars stole a vehicle from Throckley, Newcastle, before going on their spree.
The taxi driver, who lives with his wife of 32 years, Karen, 55, and his mother-in-law, Margaret Mitchell said: "They walked around her bed twice and just went through her things, They went through her bedside cabinets but fortunately her bag was on the floor and they didn't see it.
"We're lucky they didn't see it because it had all her jewellery inside. They opened the wardrobe and just went through everything. Our dog, Jack, was asleep in the room and just slept through it. He is 12 years old and has arthritis."
Today Acting Det Insp Dave Lumsden, of Newcastle CID, said: "We understand the distress and worry being broken into can cause, and we actively target burglars to make sure they are put before the courts. Detectives are carrying out inquiries into this burglary and we want to speak to anyone with information.
If anyone saw or heard anything that seemed out of the ordinary or suspicions in the area, we'd urge them to get in contact."
TRAUMA Ray Petch, George's father, died recently HOME RAID Karen and George Petch