A MAN who pretended to be a council worker in a callous attempt to force his way into a pensioner’s home, only to see his plans foiled by two brave OAPs, has been jailed for three years.
Gordon McLeod, 32, banged on the door of Ronald Cormack’s flat on Lauriston Place last May wearing a high visibility vest and claimed he was from East Lothian Council.
However, when he got inside Cormack, 70, and friend Jack Cairns, 69, were quick to take action and bundled him out of the house.
Heroin addict McLeod, produced a knife after he made his way inside the property. However Cormack and Cairns were quick to tackle him and throw him out the house.
After evicting the intruder from the property, Mr Cairns helped keep the door shut while Mr Cormack rang the police.
McLeod admitted assaulting the men at the High Court in Glasgow last month. However, sentencing was deferred until yesterday afternoon while a background report was compiled on the Prestonpans resident.
He also admitted intending to steal a mobile phone from the flat in the city centre. Jailing McLeod, Judge Lady Scott priased the actions of the two men, both of whom are more than double McLeod’s age.
Lady Scott said: “The elderly gentlemen were having a quiet social evening when you appeared and sought to gain entry by pretending there was an emergency and you needed to switch the water off.”
“When this gambit failed, you forced your way into the house, with intent to rob the householder.”
She added that when Mr McLeod realised the OAPs were resisting his attack, he “gave up and was ushered out of the house.”
She said: “Your two victims were gentlemen aged 70 and 69 years old respectively. Thankfully neither was injured.”
McLeod, who reportedly also flashed a fake I.D. card at his victims, lhas a long ist of previous convictions including one for assault and robbery in 2006 for which he received a 42 month jail sentence.
He faced charges of smashing the windows of a North Berwick pub, The Golfers’ Rest, last year but failed to appear in the dock at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.
The court previously heard McLeod was identified from CCTV images released by investigators.
Speaking on behalf on the defendant, counsel Matt Jackson said McLeod “can’t apologise enough to the victims. To force his way into the house was unforgivable.”
Speaking at his home of 16 years last month, Mr Cormack shrugged off his bravery claiming McLeod “wasn’t a good crook.”
He said: “I wasn’t scared. He wasn’t very competent - he had no idea what he came for.”
“He had a knife and I had to struggle with him.
“I had no option, who knows what would have happened if I hadn’t.”