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25th Jun, 2022

'Thoroughly dishonest man’ jailed after break-ins

Editorial Correspondent 10th Feb, 2020 Updated: 10th Feb, 2020

A ‘THOROUGHLY dishonest man’ who broke into a show home while he was on bail for burgling a storage container at a sewage treatment works near Wellesbourne has been jailed.

Brett Rooney had pleaded guilty to charges of burglary, attempted burglary and possessing a bladed article.

And at Warwick Crown Court, the 42-year-old, of Arlescote Road, Solihull, was jailed for 14 months.

Prosecutor Dean Easthope said that in December last year work was being carried out at a Severn-Trent Water sewage treatment works in Walton Road in Walton.

At just after 1am on December 17 the site manager was alerted that a motion sensor on the site had detected two people, so the police were alerted and he went to the site.

When he got there he found that a storage container had been forced open and a cable avoidance tool worth £1,700 had been stolen.

Meanwhile police officers heading to the site had spotted a white van, being driven by Rooney, coming towards them from the direction of the site, so stopped it. In the van they found gloves and a torch and the stolen cable avoidance tool.

There were also a number of other tools, but the site manager was unable to identify any of them as having come from the storage container.

Rooney was arrested, and was found to have a lock knife on him, and when he was questioned he said he had tools in the vehicle because he worked as ‘a man with a van.’

But he answered ‘no comment’ to any specific questions about the offence, and was granted bail, said Mr Easthope.

Then at just before midnight on January 1 the police had a call from someone living in Scots Lane, Coundon in Coventry, about suspicious activity at a nearby Bellway Homes development.

When the police arrived at the development at The Hedgerows they found a white van with its engine running and an alarm going off at the show home.

As officers went to the house they saw Rooney, who had forced open the rear patio door, making off, and he was caught in Scots Lane following a chase.

He said he had been in the area to visit a friend, but had then seen the show home and decided to break in to see what could be taken to fund his heroin habit.

Mr Easthope added Rooney had 28 previous convictions for 62 offences including burglary and attempted burglary.

Richard Purchase, defending, said Rooney had been getting himself sorted out following his last sentence, and had got a job, but then fell in with a bad crowd and began taking heroin again, as a result of which he lost his job.

“He has completed a drugs course while on remand, and he has expressed a desire to get back to the recovery he was living through previously,” added Mr Purchase.

But jailing Rooney, Judge Anthony Potter told him: “You are 42 years of age, and you have sadly been in this position many times before.

“Although you have not been sentenced in the past seven years, sadly today I have to deal with you for two offences. Thankfully on both occasions you were caught quickly.

“You have proved in the past to be a thoroughly dishonest man. In 2013 you were given the benefit of a drug rehabilitation order, and took advantage of that.

“It was your choice to take heroin again, and you were then out looking to take other people’s property, which you have done on many occasions in the past.”

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