Man convicted of burglary in Whitefield and fights in Radcliffe restaurant

A MAN has been jailed for participating in a horrific burglary that left a five-year-old child “crushed and terrified”.

He was also convicted at Minshull Street Crown Court on Thursday along with three other men for his part in a mass fight at a teenager’s birthday party at Whitefield’s EastzEast restaurant.

Charlie Wallbank, 19, of Wilson Road, Manchester, was jailed for a total of four years and 11 months for aggravated burglary and five years and eight months for vandalism.

Judge John Potter said: “The child who witnessed this was clearly saddened, terrified.”

He added: “For a five-year-old child, this is almost beggars.”

The court heard how Wallbank was part of a gang of three masked men who broke into a home on Goldfinch Drive, Bury on February 17, 2020 using hammers.

Residents took the child and hid in a bathroom upstairs before some of the men broke in and forced a terrified man to hand over £ 500 from the bedroom.

A pair of training shoes worth £ 380 were also taken, while the gang caused an additional £ 500 to injury.

Prosecutor Andy Scott told the court how even though the victims were physically unharmed, they all, especially the child, suffered some mental injury.

Wallbank was later identified thanks to blood left on the spot and was arrested in December 2020.

Nearly a year earlier, Wallbank had also participated in a mass brawl at EastzEast restaurant along with Jack Conway, 19 of Holden Drive, Swinton, Asa Millar, 19 of Cemetery Road South, Swinton and Jacob Wazo, 20 of Henderson Avenue, Swinton.

The same court heard how the fight on March 30, 2019 had started after a disagreement between two young women near the dance floor, which came to blow.

Millar then joined in, threw a blow at one of the young women and tried to kick her on the floor, and then he wounded another young man with a kitchen knife.

Wazo, who had gone to the party “armed and intending to enjoy the social occasion,” as his defender said, then intervened and tried to pull Millar away from the fight before even attacking the same young man with a cosh.

Wallbank then became involved and was drawn into a fight with Conway, who armed himself with a hammer in self-defense.

The injured young man, who was not charged with an offense, collapsed outside the venue and had to be treated at the hospital.

All four of the defendants pleaded guilty, and Wallbank did the same for the burglary, which was considered mitigation along with their youth.

Aside from Wallbank’s conviction for both crimes, Millar was jailed for a total of three years for his involvement in the fight and for possession of an article with magazines.

Wazo received a total conditional sentence of nine months with 200 hours of unpaid work and a 15-day rehabilitation claim, while Conway received two years of community service with a claim of 200 hours of unpaid work.

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