A pair of would-be burglars have been jailed after police found Google searches for “how to open a locked window” on one of their mobile phones.
Jordan Malcom-Taylor, 28, and Nikisha Hosten, 22, had planned to raid a property in Virginia Water, Surrey in 2020.
But they were spotted running through the back garden and, although they escaped a pursuing occupant, were caught by police soon after.
Officers later tracked down Hosten’s phone where they found web searches for “what to do with £3m”, “where to get a gun” and “how to open a locked window” in her browser history.
Further damning evidence came to light after the pair’s arrest, including CCTV footage of them carrying out a reconnaissance visit to the area the day before the offence.
A search of Hosten’s home also found a key belonging to the patio door of the house where the burglary was due to take place.
Both were found guilty of attempted aggravated burglary and possession of an imitation firearm following a trial at Kingston Crown Court.
And Malcom-Taylor, of Tottenham, was sentenced to nine years and nine months in prison while Hosten, of Mitcham, received 11 years.
Jurors had heard how the duo had looked for a suitable home to break into during the weeks leading up to their botched operation.
The pair settled on a property in Virginia Water – where homes can sell for multiple millions of pounds – and entered through a fence on 15 April, 2020.
But they were spotted running through the back garden, and one of the occupants chased Malcom-Taylor in a bid to get him to stop, but he was able to escape.
Local police, who were responding to the incident, later arrested Malcom-Taylor in his getaway vehicle after they noticed that he matched a description of the suspect.
And in the car, they found two knives, an imitation firearm, handcuffs and a bank card belonging to Hosten, who was then arrested at her home two days later.
A bag seized near the home, which was discarded by Malcom-Taylor during his escape, was also found to contain a claw hammer, cable ties and a jerry can of petrol.
The pair were sentenced on Friday, July 29, after they originally pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Following the sentencing, Detective Sergeant Hannah Clarke, of Surrey Police, said it was a “relief” the pair were now behind bars.
She said: “Hosten and Malcom-Taylor had planned to carry out a violent burglary and showed frightening disregard for their victims in the process. Thankfully, their plans were foiled.
“The evidence against them was overwhelming and painted a real picture of the lengths they were willing to go to purely for selfish, monetary gain. It is a relief that they are now behind bars.”