Jail for burglar who stole wallet from Norwich property to pay to get back to Kent for his birthday
PUBLISHED: 17:00 17 January 2019 | UPDATED: 17:00 17 January 2019
A drug addict who burgled a Norwich home as part of a bid to try and raise cash to pay for train tickets so he could get back to Kent for his birthday, a court has heard.
Richard Hennessey, 31, broke into a property in Heigham Road, Norwich, and stole a wallet containing bank cards.
Norwich Crown Court heard the homeowner was in the property on the evening of September 22 last year but had noticed a door at the property was open.
He closed it when he went to bed, at about 1am on September 23.
Martin Ivory, prosecuting on Thursday (January 17) said the following morning the homeowner realised his wallet was missing and that he had been burgled.
Mr Ivory said shortly after the burglary, cards stolen from the address were used at stores, including Esso and Tesco.
A total of about £120 was taken before the cards were cancelled.
Hennessey, of no fixed abode, was recognised on CCTV at one of the stores the cards were used at.
He was arrested and although initially denied any involvement, has now pleaded guilty to burglary and five offences of fraud, relating to the stolen cards.
Matthew Sorel-Cameron, mitigating, said the offences were committed by Hennessey, who has been addicted to heroin since he was 19, just three days before his birthday.
He said he had been hoping to get items which he could sell to pay for his travel so he could get back to Kent for his birthday.
Mr Sorel-Cameron admitted it was a rather ‘cack-handed’ way to go about this.
He said there was limited intrusion in the burglary and although the homeowner was in he was not aware of his presence.
Hennessey has 31 convictions for 63 previous convictions, including two previous burglaries which make him a three strike burglar.
Offenders who are convicted of a third house burglary normally face a minimum prison sentence of three years under the three strikes rule.
Mr Sorel-Cameron said he had no ammunition to contest that.
But he added his client has mental health issues.
Judge Stephen Holt said most of this defendant’s criminal activity was down to the fact he had been taken heroin since he was a teenager.
Judge Holt sentenced Hennessey to a total of 876 days, just over 15 months, in prison.