'Hungry' man broke into Abergavenny care home and stole sweets and biscuits
7:20pm Tuesday 13th August 2013 in News
A DRUNKEN man in Abergavenny broke into a care home for elderly people suffering with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease to steal sugar free sweets, biscuits and tea bags because “he was hungry” a court heard.
Liam Cribb, of no fixed abode was remanded in custody pending sentencing after pleading guilty at Cwmbran Magistrates’ Court to the burglary last week.
The court was told by prosecutor Robert Simkins that Cribb was very drunk late last Tuesday night when he was passing the Belmont House care home in the town.
The home is a specialist care facility for elderly residents suffering with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease and has 26 single rooms.
The court was told that Cribb was said to have spotted an open window that turned out to lead into the kitchen.
Almost immediately a member of staff spotted Cribb and not recognising him went to report it to other members of staff. They, in turn, called the police.
The call was made at 11.45pm and police went to the scene. Officers then picked up Cribb on the main road outside the home around five minutes later.
Police who arrested him found Cribb to have boiled sweets and tea bags on his person. These had been stolen from the kitchen at Belmont House, the court was told.
The district judge David Webster was told that Cribb had been very hungry and had nowhere to stay. He had noticed the open window as he passed and climbed into the home.
David Bond, who gave mitigation for Cribb, said that the items his client stole were of a very low value.
Cribb also pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity, Mr Bond pointed out.
After the court hearing, a spokeswoman for the care home said: “We want to stress that at no time did he come into contact with residents and nor could he as the kitchen door was securely locked. Staff found him very quickly.”
Cribb’s sentencing was adjourned while a pre-sentence report is prepared. The court heard he had 20 previous convictions for 25 offences described as being committed over a 'sporadic' period of time, including a theft on June 15 2011.
He will next appear before Caerphilly Magistrates’ Court on August 22.
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