Armed robber terrified woman when he smashed his way into her home

Photo shows Sonny Wharmsby
Sonny Wharmsby -Credit:Nottinghamshire Police

This armed robber smashed his way into a woman’s house, threatened her, and demanded money before running off with items he stole from her. Nottingham Crown Court heard how the victim was woken up by her dogs barking. When she got up, she heard a bang and a smash and saw Sonny Wharmsby climbing through her living room window.

The 42-year-old, who was armed with a pickaxe, demanded money and carried out a search of her house, in Hickling Court, Mansfield, after he was told there was no money. While he was rummaging around, the terrified victim managed to escape and ran away to a neighbour’s house. She wasn’t physically hurt but was left extremely shaken by what happened.

Police officers arrived at the scene and chased the defendant into a nearby block of flats where he was detained following the robbery which happened around 6am on 27 November 2023. Officers had earlier been called after reports of a shed break-in, committed by the same offender, at an address in nearby Garratt Avenue after a resident noticed items out of place in his garden and a pickaxe missing from his shed at around 5.15am.

Wharmsby, of Argyle Street, Mansfield, pleaded guilty to robbery and burglary and was jailed for four years and two months when he appeared for sentencing on Tuesday, May 21. He was also made subject of a five-year restraining order, banning him from contacting the robbery victim.

PC Philipp James, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “This was a terrifying ordeal for the robbery victim who saw Wharmsby climbing in through her window after being woken up that morning.

“I hope she can take some degree of comfort now he has been locked up for his frightening criminality.

"I also hope our rapid response and work in this investigation shows how committed Nottinghamshire Police is to using all the resources at its disposal to identify and catch robbers and burglars like Wharmsby and bring them before the courts to face justice."