Sneaky drug addict crept into home of elderly Sheffield couple and stole wallets

Sheffield Crown Court
Sheffield Crown Court
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A drug addict who crept into a Sheffield couple’s home and stole their wallets while they were at home has been jailed.

Cheryl Edwards, aged 26, was drunk when she burgled the house in Westbourne Road, Broomhill, on Friday, June 13.

Ian Goldsack, prosecuting at Sheffield Crown Court, said the house’s 71-year-old female occupant was sewing her granddaughter’s prom dress – and had the garment over her head so she could fix the lining to the skirt – when she became aware of someone in the kitchen or hallway, who she presumed to be her husband.

Mr Goldsack said the woman then heard her husband on the stairs, followed by the sound of the outside gate closing.

Shortly afterwards the couple discovered their wallets, which had been in a downstairs room, were missing.

Mr Goldsack said: “They were looking around the house when the police came to the door and returned items to them including a railcard and some Scottish banknotes.

“Edwards had gone to other properties on the same road claiming she was pregnant and running away from her boyfriend, who had beaten her up.

“She was stopped by police nearby in a state of intoxication, carrying some bags.”

Mr Goldsack said Edwards had stolen £45.12 in cash from the couple, as well as debit and credit cards.

In a victim impact statement, the woman said the incident had ‘upset her greatly’ and her husband no longer wanted to go on holiday.

The court heard Edwards, of Gray Street, Pitsmoor, had 27 previous convictions for 47 offences, including 29 for theft.

Paul O’Shea, mitigating, said she had the ‘record of a drug addict’.

He said she had already spent four-and-a-half-months in custody on remand and was in a ‘much better position than she was’.

Mr O’Shea said she had lived a ‘chaotic’ and ‘hand-to-mouth existence’ but, despite her record, the burglary was a ‘one off’.

He said: “This was an opportunistic sneak-in offence.”

Edwards admitted burglary.

Jailing her for seven months, Judge Julian Goose QC said Edwards was subject to two community orders at the time and had a ‘very poor record’.

He told her: “You will be released almost straight away, but I’m told you have used your time in custody to good effect.”