Sex offender on crime spree stole food donated for vulnerable
- Credit: Archant
A sex offender stole food intended for vulnerable people in lockdown and goods worth thousands from shops during a burglary spree.
Jeffery Burton, 44, of no fixed address, admitted thefts in Wisbech amounting to more than £11,000 and also failing to comply with notification requirements of the Sex Offenders’ Register.
He was arrested on April 3 in connection with a break-in on March 27 at a charity for the homeless in Bridge Street – 50 Backpacks – whereby a window had been smashed and £170 in cash was stolen.
Food items which were being put together to create parcels for vulnerable people in the community due to the coronavirus crisis were also stolen.
Det Con Natalie Hines, from the northern burglary team, said: “CCTV footage from the shelter was reviewed which identified the intruder as Jeffery Burton.”
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The day after the 50 Backpacks break-in, D&S General Store in North Street, Wisbech, also had a window smashed, before BUrton stole £7,000-worth of cigarettes, cash from the till, a Nokia Lumia mobile phone and the store owner’s wallet.
Again, he was captured on CCTV committing the offence and fingerprints were left at the scene.
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At about 10.15pm on April 1, staff from Boots in Horsefair attended the store after an alarm was activated. A glass door had been smashed and electric toothbrushes and hairdryers worth £1,003 were stolen.
The following day, Boots was broken into for a second time. This time Burton stole electric toothbrushes worth £700.
On April 3, Burton was spotted in Horsefair by police officers and was arrested. Officers found on him an electric toothbrush which had the same serial number as one of the stolen items from Boots the previous two nights.
Burton had also been identified as being responsible for the theft of £2,500-worth of lead from a grade two-listed property in Lynn Road between 21 and 25 March.
He was charged with - and admitted - two counts of theft by finding, four counts of non-dwelling burglary and failing to comply with notification requirements of the Sex Offenders’ Register.
Burton was placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register 25 years ago after being convicted of indecent assault. Part of the requirements of being on the register mean all offenders must register where they are living with police. If they are homeless they must register this with police every seven days. He failed to do this, therefore breaching the requirements.
Burton admitted all of the offences he was charged with and appeared at Peterborough Crown Court, where he was sentenced to 20 months in prison.
Det Con Hines added: “Burton went on a crime spree, obtaining thousands of pounds-worth of goods in a matter of days.”