A CAREER burglar who was on the run has been jailed following a spate of thefts in Stratford.
The 43-year-old of Giles Close, Birmingham, was arrested on May 24 after his car was spotted after he targeted homes across the town and in nearby Knowle.
At Warwick Crown Court on Monday (July 16) Hatton pleaded guilty burglary, driving while disqualified, and breach of a restraining order in connection with an incident on May 18.
He was jailed for five years and seven months.
Hatton was on the run at the time of the burglaries, having previously absconded from HMP Sudbury where he was serving a three year and eight month sentence for harassment, common assault, threats to kill, and dangerous driving. He was also convicted of escaping lawful custody.
Hatton broke into two houses in Hogarth Road where he forced the back door open and stole jewellery.
Using the same method, Hatton then broke into a house in Wetherby Way in Stratford, and stole watches worth around £3,000.
Next he targeted an address in nearby Aintree Road, where a CCTV recording showed him wearing a balaclava mask. He escaped with more jewellery.
Hatton then broke into properties in Knowle where he took car keys and jewellery.
Later that day a police officer saw Hatton, who was disqualified, driving back towards Stratford in a Vauxhall Astra.
Realising he had been seen, Hatton abandoned the car, but was found hiding in nearby bushes and was arrested, and in the car were items linking him to the burglaries.
The court heard how he had previously walked out of open prison in Derbyshire, where he then turned up outside the home of his former partner who called police. But he had disappeared by the time officers arrived.
Spencer Stephens, defending, said: “His father had begun to suffer from dementia and didn’t recognise him in phone calls, which Mr Hatton says broke him.
“He was told he would be eligible for his first home visit in July, but that was moved back to November, so he asked if he could have a supervised visit to see his father, but that was also refused.
“So he walked out. His intention was to see his father. But as soon as he left the police were in contact with his mother, and she would not let him visit because of the police attention.”
Hatton was sentenced to four-and-a-half years for the burglaries, with consecutive terms of nine months for escape, two months for harassment and two for driving while disqualified.
Judge Andrew Lockhart QC said: “Your type of offending has a real effect on people, and you have an utterly appalling record and were serving a prison sentence.
“You escaped from that prison sentence, and it was a month after you walked out that you committed the offence of harassment, and then you began this spate of burglaries.”
Warwickshire Police Det Cons Karl Brennan said: “Hatton has caused a lot of misery to the residents of Stratford.
“Local people can sleep more comfortably now he is behind bars.”