Lodger Richard Clark who burgled his landlady while she was on holiday is jailed 12 months
- Credit: Norfolk Constabulary
A lodger burgled his landlady while she was away and then left her a note confessing his crime, before handing himself into police, a court heard.
Richard Clark, 50, was lodging with the victim in Copenhagen Walk, Dereham, and when she went away on holiday leaving him alone in the property to look after her home, he stole jewellery to obtain drugs, Norwich Crown Court heard.
Jude Durr, prosecuting, said he left a note for the landlady telling her about the theft and then handed himself in to police saying he wanted to be arrested.
'This defendant presented himself at the local police station accepting he had carried out the burglary.'
Mr Durr said three gold rings, for which he got paid £400, were recovered from a pawn shop but a silver charm bracelet, which he gave to a drug dealer, was never recovered.
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In a statement, the victim said she had suffered a great deal as a result of the burglary and now wanted to move from the address.
She said the experience had also left her fearful of taking in another lodger and said the jewellery that had been taken was of sentimental value.
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Clark, who admitted burglary in February this year, claimed it had been a 'cry for help' as he had a number of difficulties.
The court heard he had a number of previous convictions for dishonesty.
Jailing him for 12 months, Recorder Alastair Wilson told him: 'There was significant sentimental value to the jewellery you took. You committed it against your landlady, who had taken you in and shown you kindness. You betrayed her.'
He accepted Clark was remorseful for what he had done and had mental health difficulties.
Mark Roochove, for Clark, said at the time Clark's behaviour had 'spiralled out of control' and said: 'This was a cry for help.'
He said that Clark had a number of difficulties including mental health problems and suffered from depression.
Mr Roochove said that Clark had bought drugs with the proceeds of the burglary and said: 'Having taken his drugs he then hands himself into police.'