Jail for homeless drunk who flooded empty pub

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A HOMELESS man was jailed for a year after he broke into a pub, downed ale, chalked his name on the bar and flooded the building.

A court heard Damion Rough, 32, tore radiators from upstairs rooms in the Victoria Inn, Lowgates, Staveley in October.

It sent water cascading into the bars, leaving a large repair job just before a new landlord was due to move in, said Alex Wolfson, prosecuting.

Light fittings were pulled out and tables and chairs were broken.

Derby Crown Court heard Rough was arrested inside the premises and admitted he had been sleeping there.

He was released without charge.

But while serving a prison term for another offence, he contacted officers to say he was to blame for the damage.

Mr Wolfson said the property was owned by Punch Taverns, and a tenant had moved out on October 7.

Staff checked the premises on October 21 to find no problems but five days later “it was completely smashed up,” he added.

Former engineer Rough admitted burglary and criminal damage and asked to be jailed.

Recorder Richard Swain granted his wish and told him: “The offences were undoubtedly committed while under the influence of the drink which had been left there.

“You committed a substantial amount of damage, including ripping radiators off the walls and causing significant flooding.

“The value of the damage can’t be precisely assessed but it is said to be in the region of £15,000 to £20,000.”

The recorder said Rough had the ‘most appalling criminal record’ but accepted he might not have been charged had he not admittedthe offences.

Sarah Brown, defending Rough, said he wanted to go to prison and put the matter behind him, adding he was drunk at the time.