A SERIAL burglar who broke into a South Yorkshire hospice charity shop and stole cash has been jailed 21 months.
Drug addict Scott Taylor, aged 29, was jailed by Sheffield’s top judge Alan Goldsack QC after he admitted breaking into Barnsley Hospice shop on Blucher Street, ransacking the store and stealing money.
Elizabeth Martin, prosecuting, said staff arrived at the shop one morning last October to find a window smashed, paperwork strewn about and the contents of a safe rifled.
Taylor – who has 50 previous convictions including seven break-ins at homes and four of non-dwellings – was caught after blood samples found at the scene were matched to him.
When arrested he claimed he had been to a drugs den and cut himself, using some gloves to stem the blood flow which a third party had then taken to the shop.
He also said the smashed window was too small for him to climb through.
The court heard Taylor was jailed for two years in 2008 for burglary and three months in 2010 for stealing staff possessions after breaking into a Subway restaurant.
Danny Simpson, defending, said his offending was fuelled by his addiction to heroin and cocaine. He suffered from deep vein thrombosis and ulcers to his legs.
He said Taylor, of Midland Road, Royston, Barnsley, had tried to wean himself off drugs by taking MCat – or Miaow Miaow – but his health suffered even more and now he had mobility problems.
Mr Simpson said Barnsley Drug Treatment Agency wanted to educate school children about the dangers of using MCat and had requested images of Taylor’s legs to show how harmful the drug can be.
He said since Taylor had been placed on a drug rehabilitation programme in February by magistrates he had made ‘remarkable progress’ and tested clear of opiates.
“It is the first time in many years he has not been using Class A drugs,” he said.
Taylor had been offered a two-bed flat and jailing him would disrupt his progress.
“It was an amateur burglary by someone who was desperate to raise money to buy drugs,” Mr Simpson said.
But Judge Goldsack QC said Taylor’s crime was aggravated by the fact he broke into a charitable enterprise ‘which provided for people in their final days’.