CRUMBS! A burglar has been caught with her hand in the cookie jar after she left a half-munched chocolate biscuit at one of the scenes of her Sydenham crimes.

Police have now revealed how the biscuit-eating burglar befriended five Sydenham residents in one day before ruthlessly stealing from them - but left DNA clues on the teatime treat she had with one 84-year-old victim.

News Shopper: Crumbs! Serial burglar caught with DNA on biscuit munched at victim's Sydenham home

In a move that really takes the biscuit, Lola Williams shared a cup of tea and sob story with an elderly lady in Longfield Crescent before going upstairs and looting her home.

But the 31-year-old, of Manor Place, Southwark, might not find prison is her cup of tea after being jailed for four years at Woolwich Crown Court after pleading guilty to five distraction burglaries.

Police say unemployed Williams was tracked after preying on "kind-spirited" Sydenham residents - often targeting the elderly and using emotional appeals to be let into their homes.

Her tall tales included saying her brother had been in an accident and she needed shelter from the cold, to being thirsty, needing the toilet, and being locked out of her house.

In the space of a single day, she targeted five homes in Longfield Crescent, Dartmouth Road, and Sydenham Park Road and made off with wallets and cash on November 21 last year.

News Shopper: Crumbs! Serial burglar caught with DNA on biscuit munched at victim's Sydenham home

A 49-year-old man in Dartmouth Road found her banging on the window asking to use the phone as she had lost her house-keys. She pretended to dial before swiping his wallet from a bedroom.

Williams landed in hot water after a DNA swab from the half -eaten chocolate digestive consumed at her first crime in Longfield Crescent led detectives to her Southwark abode.

Detective Constable Kevin Seed from Lewisham's Serious Acquisitive Crime Unit said: "I am really pleased with the result of the investigation.

"It was the DNA on the biscuit that led us to Williams together with the work of our forensic experts.

"Williams thought that she had devised a clever ploy to get into people’s homes, but it was her befriending tactic that eventually let her down.

"She exploited the goodwill of those kind-spirited people she targeted."

He added: "She will have plenty of time to think about what she did behind bars."

From biscuit to burglar

  • November 21 2012: Williams preys on the kindness of five Sydenham residents to enter their homes and rob them
  • April 26 2013: DNA evidence from the biscuit matches with an address where Williams is found, arrested and identified by one of the victims.
  • August 29 2013: Williams is sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court to four years in prison