A burglar Â has been jailed for four years after being caught by newly installed CCTV cameras in Willington.
Ivor Piggott, 25, of Spruce Walk, Kempston, burgled a home in Bedford Road on Wednesday, November 5.
Piggott broke into the house through the patio doors, ripped the alarm from the wall and removed a CCTV recorder before taking the keys to the ownerâ€™s Mercedes.
But he was caught on CCTV as the passenger in the stolen car as it was driven away from the village.
The cameras had been recently installed after a successful funding bid by the villageâ€™s Neighbourhood Watch group.
Piggott was arrested and charged with burglary and taking a vehicle without consent. He pleaded guilty and was jailed for a total of four years at Luton Crown Court on Tuesday (December 9).
Detective Constable Jason Wheeler said: â€œThis is a great example of how valuable the CCTV cameras are when investigating crime.
â€œWe were quickly able to identify Piggott and ensure he was brought to justice.
â€œWe are cracking down on burglary across the county at the moment and this case should serve as a reminder for people to vigilant and report all suspicious activity.â€
Willington Parish Councillor and CCTV working group member, Shane Horlock said: â€œThis is an outstanding result which shows how a community working together can greatly improve their own security.
â€œWillington residents, the Neighbourhood Watch team, the parish and borough councillors, the Bedfordshire and Luton Community Foundation and the Bedfordshire Community Safety Fund have jointly given us a great CCTV system which has immediately proven its value to the community.â€
Cllr Sarah-Jayne Holland, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Regulatory Services, said: â€œThis is a prime example of how the use of CCTV across the Borough, including rural areas, plays a vital role in identifying criminals, stopping crime and reassuring local residents that we are doing everything we can to keep Bedford Borough a safe place to live and work.â€
A spokesman for the local Neighbourhood Watch added: â€œThis should make people aware that we have CCTV in place in the village. And anyone who comes here with the intention of committing crime faces being caught on camera.â€
People are urged to follow crime prevention advice to deter burglars including keeping their property well-lit, using timers when out, ensure doors and windows are locked and invest in a burglar alarm.