South Yorkshire man caught with a "Molotov cocktail" petrol bomb is jailed

A man who was caught by police discarding a "Molotov cocktail" petrol bomb from a car has been put behind bars.

By Jon Cooper
Wednesday, 16th February 2022, 2:16 pm

Sheffield Crown Court heard on February 11 how Jonathan Osbourne, aged 29, of Hoyle Mill Road, Stairfoot, Barnsley, was seen in a parked car on Bridge Street, near Old Mill Lane, Barnsley, with another man before police found material smelling of fuel and broken glass nearby.

Zaiban Alam, prosecuting, said: “The police's attention was drawn to a VW Golf parked on Bridge Street and Old Mill Lane.”

Ms Alam added two males were in the vehicle including Osbourne and a plastic bag was thrown out before they were pursued and stopped by police who found material smelling of fuel and broken glass where the vehicle had been parked.

Pictured is Jonathan Osbourne, aged 29, of Hoyle Mill Road, Stairfoot, Barnsley, who was sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court to two-and-a-half years of custody after he pleaded guilty to having an explosive device and to also breaching a restraining order four times and causing criminal damage.

Osbourne, who had been a passenger in the vehicle, pleaded guilty to having an explosive substance after the incident in February, 2018.

Judge Jeremy Richardson QC, The Recorder of Sheffield, described the explosive device as a “small petrol bomb” and as “a sort of "Molotov cocktail”.

The court also heard the driver of the VW Golf and Osbourne's co-accused has already been sentenced to 18 months of custody suspended for 12 months.

But Osbourne also admitted four counts of breaching a restraining order and causing damage committed after he contacted a former partner and smashed up her car.

Ms Alam said Osbourne had been made subject to a restraining order not to contact his former partner but he phoned her and threatened her leaving her terrified.

Osbourne also appeared at the home of a friend of his former partner while she was there and he smashed up her car, according to Ms Alam.

Despite the couple briefly reconciling in 2021, the relationship broke down again and she received a phone call from the defendant and later realised he had been at her house when she found her dog had gone missing.

The court heard Osbourne has previous convictions for criminal damage, handling stolen goods, dishonesty, burglary, affray, harassment and for breaching restraining orders.

Stephen Littlewood, defending, said Osbourne has since been taking positive steps to change his life and he has been working.

Judge Richardson told Osbourne he would be sentenced to two-and-a-half years of custody allowing for time spent remanded in custody and on curfew.

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