Martham offender told he had been around the courts more than many judges

Norwich Crown Court. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich Crown Court. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

A petty offender with a long list of previous convictions was jailed for six months by a judge who told him he had been around the courts more than many judges.

Joseph Adams, 35, smashed his way into Mr Vac Man in Southtown Road, in Great Yarmouth and stole vacuum cleaners and cash totalling £1,600, Norwich Crown Court heard.

Martin Ivory, prosecuting, said Adams was caught on camera breaking into the store by smashing in the door and then removing the items.

He also stole £30 of petty cash.

Adams, of Hemsby Road, Martham, admitted the burglary in July, this year.

The court heard that Adams had a number of previous convictions, mainly for thefts to fund his long-standing drug addiction.

Sentencing him, Judge Maureen Bacon told him he had many previous convictions for dishonesty and said: 'You have been around the courts more than many judges, and have appeared regularly for acquisitive crime.'

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She said he had been given chances in the past to get help with his drug problem which he had not taken up and said she had no alternative but to jail him.

Peter Spary, for Adams, said that addiction to heroin and crack cocaine lay behind his offending, adding: 'His record bears that sad reality out.'

He said that Adams had been heavily intoxicated when he burgled the shop and had left the vacuum cleaners in an alleyway.

'He cannot remember much about it,' Mr Spary said.

'He did not plan it and was heavily intoxicated and did not financially benefit from it.'

Mr Spary said Adams had been released from his last prison sentence without any support and was living hand-to-mouth.

He said that Adams now wanted to get clean of drugs.

'He hopes that he can come out of prison clean and try to get a job,' Mr Spary said. 'He desperately wants to work.'

He said Adams should have credit for his guilty plea.

As he was taken down to the cells, Judge Bacon told Adams that it was up to him whether he messed up again on his release.

She told him: 'It's up to you.'

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