A man broke into several cars, stole items from inside them and brandished a bar when approached by police officers.

Bernard Rawstron, 48, committed the offences in Whalley and Clitheroe, with his crimes happening late at night and in the early hours of the morning.

Rawstron, of Leach Street, Blackburn, was given a six-month prison sentence at Blackburn Magistrates’ Court.

He was also banned from entering Whalley for three years after the Ribble Valley neighbourhood policing team applied for a Criminal Behaviour Order after showing Rawstron’s offending had caused the local community to be alarmed, distressed, and harassed.

In March, Rawstron was seen by two off-duty police officers trying to open a car door in Whalley. When they chased him, he brandished a bar, causing the officers to back away.

The following week, he was seen in a carport late at night and pulled a CCTV camera off a gatepost.

In April, Rawstron broke into a Volkswagen Crafter in Holden Street, Clitheroe. He was arrested again the following week, in the same area, having stolen from a car.

He pleaded guilty to offences of theft, handling stolen goods, and possessing an offensive weapon.

Sgt Duncan Hall of the Ribble Valley neighbourhood policing team said: “We were pleased to bring Bernard Rawstron to justice.

“We hope that the prison sentence imposed by the court and the Criminal Behaviour Order will prevent him offending again in the area and offer reassurance to the people of Whalley.”