Violent Barking Riverside burglar jailed after being caught during South Woodford home invasion by retired Tower Hamlets police sergeant

David Hansen, of Lawes Way, Barking Riverside, has been jailed for nine years for carrying out an ag

David Hansen, of Lawes Way, Barking Riverside, has been jailed for nine years for carrying out an aggravated burglary in South Woodford. Picture: Met Police - Credit: Archant

A violent burglar from Barking Riverside and his accomplice have been jailed after being caught red-handed during a violent raid on a South Woodford home – by a retired police sergeant who used to work in Tower Hamlets.

David Hansen, aged 27 of Lawes Way, was sentenced to nine years in prison after being found guilty of aggravated burglary at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Friday, February 14.

His accomplice, 24-year-old Sean Bello of no fixed address, was also jailed for seven and a half years for the same charge. The Metropolitan Police have confirmed they do not have a custody image of Bello on file.

The court heard that at around 5.25pm on August 11 last year, retired Met sergeant, Kenneth Alen was at home in South Woodford when he noticed a suspect vehicle, a black Audi S-Line, repeatedly going the wrong way down a one way system.

The car parked up outside a house and two men got out and put on face coverings and hoodies.

They approached a house belonging to a woman who lived with her young family, and forced their way inside.

Fortunately, the house was empty at the time of the incident.

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By this point Mr Alen had called the incident into 999.

He approached the suspect vehicle and spotted a man sat in the driver's seat.

As he went to the driver's door, the vehicle sped off, so Mr Alen headed towards the front door as the two suspects were making their way out, and attempted to stop them.

He was punched several times in the process.

Response officers from the East Area Command Unit had arrived at the scene by this point.

One of them, Pc Natalia Kolodziej, chased the suspects into the kitchen, where she grappled with the two men while waiting for support from Mr Alen and her colleagues.

The men were detained with assistance from Mr Alen.

They were found to be in possession of flick knives, a large screw driver, and a large quantity of gold - later identified as having been stolen from the address.

Hansen and Bello were taken into custody, later charged, and remanded in custody.

Det Con Danny D'Arcy, of the East Area Command Unit which is responsible for policing Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge, said: "A police officer is never off duty, and this is a prime example of that.

"Hansen and Bello pose a significant risk of harm to the public and have been incarcerated for their crimes thanks to the valiant and selfless actions of Mr Alen and Px Kolodziej, who have teamed up to go above and beyond what is expected of them to apprehend armed and violent offenders in difficult circumstances.

"Also due to the diligent work of the officer in the case, Det Con McNamee of the East Area Gangs and Proactive Unit, they were charged with aggravated burglary and received the significant sentence."