For more than half a century the village post office that was a couple's home was crime-free.
But this was shattered at 1.50 one morning when Christopher Rowe, 41, broke into their conservatory and removed a fuse to prevent the lights going on.
He left after failing to break into the rest of the house at Llanfair P.G. despite using a shovel, but what had happened had changed the lives of postmaster James Evans and wife Brenda.
A judge at Caernarfon crown court was told this on Monday when Rowe, of Bro Tudur, Llangefni, was jailed for two years and five months after pleading guilty to burglary with intent to steal. He was sentenced under the three-strikes rule, having a previous record which included 14 house burglaries.
Ffion Tomos, prosecuting, said the couple had lived in the village for sixty years and Mr Evans had said they had "never experienced anything like it" in regards to the burglary.
"They no longer felt safe in their own home," he'd declared. Mrs Evans, 79, was too frightened to be there alone.
Dafydd Roberts, defending, said Rowe who had a good job with a civil engineering firm had been released from hospital a few hours earlier after being treated for an overdose of diazepam. He was very sorry for the effect of his behaviour but had no recollection of the burglary. It was sad for him because he had reverted to his old ways because of drugs but was now "determined to rid himself of the problem."
Judge Huw Rees said Mr and Mrs Evans were highly regarded locally and had the frightening experience of being awoken by noise in the early hours, Mr Evans going to investigate. Rowe had the guile to remove a fuse, showing planning and determination, which meant that Mr Evans had to search in darkness, adding to "the degree of fright this elderly couple experienced."
After the case Det Sgt Chris Hargrave of Bangor CID commented : “We welcome the sentence today and hope it sends a clear message to those committing these types of offences. Any burglary is a violation of the things that people hold most dear.
"We fully realise the impact it has on victims and our commitment to dealing with these offences is clear. We will relentlessly pursue those who cause harm in our communities. Whether you are a drug dealer, burglar or other dangerous offender, if you cause harm in our community there will be no hiding place.
”We appreciate the continued support of the public in providing valuable intelligence on those who cause the most harm in our communities.”