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Market Drayton burglar shouts at jury after verdict

North Shropshire | News | Published:

A 'cowardly' burglar who stole a pensioner's handbag after sneaking into her home yelled abuse at jurors as he was sent to prison, telling them they were 'sending down an innocent man for Christmas'.

A 'cowardly' burglar who stole a pensioner's handbag after sneaking into her home yelled abuse at jurors as he was sent to prison, telling them they were 'sending down an innocent man for Christmas'.

Callum Simpson, 21, caused a commotion at Shrewsbury Crown Court yesterday as he was sentenced to 22 months in jail after being found guilty of burglary. He had stolen a bag containing £20.

Sentencing of Simpson, of Portland Drive, Market Drayton, was delayed by about 30 minutes when he began shouting abuse at the jury at the end of his trial.

Simpson, who had denied the charge, stole the handbag from the elderly lady's home on July 31 last year.

He sneaked into her house while she was gardening.

Giving evidence, Simpson insisted he was innocent.

Simpson had told the court: "I didn't do the burglary. The person who did it is a scumbag and deserves to go to jail."

But after the jury found him guilty, Judge Robert Trevor-Jones told Simpson that the burglary was a 'cowardly' act.

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He said the offence was made more serious because he had targeted a vulnerable person in their own home.

The judge said: "This case is so serious that only custody will do and it is an offence aggravated by the fact it happened at an elderly person's home – and you clearly knew that."

Prosecutors told the court that at about 3.30pm on July 31 a handbag containing a purse with a £10 note and £10 in change was taken from a living room of a one-bedroom home within warden-patrolled bungalows in Market Drayton.

Mr Kevin Jones, prosecuting, told the court the warden was not working on the day of the offence.

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He said the home owner had left the front and back doors open while she did some gardening at the front.

The court heard she had tied her dog to the back of the house and at 3.30pm it started to bark. She went into the house and discovered the handbag had gone.

By Andrew Morris

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