Career criminal sent back to prison for burgling Sheffield pub

A career criminal with a record of 130 offences has been sent back to prison for burgling a Sheffield pub and using a stolen bank card.

Wednesday, 11th September 2019, 16:14 pm
Updated Thursday, 12th September 2019, 18:15 pm

Luke Thistlethwaite was on license from a 20-month prison sentence for burglary, when he broke into The Howard pub at around 2.15am on May 20 this year.

Sheffield Crown Court heard how the landlady of the city centre pub was upstairs when the burglary took place, and was alerted to it when she heard voices coming from downstairs.

Addressing Thistlethwaite, Recorder Keir Monteith said: “You’ve got to think about the damage you cause. It’s not like this doesn’t affect anyone, it does.”

Luke Thistlewhaite has been jailed for one year and six weeks for charges of burglary and fraud by false representation. Picture: South Yorkshire Police

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Once inside, Thistlethwaite stole several bottles of alcohol before fleeing the scene.

Recorder Monteith said Thistlethwaite, aged 28, gained access to the pub by ‘kicking in’ an entrance door, which cost an estimated £2,000 to repair.

Despite the landlady saying she heard the voice of more than one person coming from downstairs, CCTV obtained by the police showed Thistlethwaite stealing from the pub alone.

Thistlethwaite offended again less than a month later on June 18, when he used a stolen bank card to buy three packets of cigarettes and a drink, costing a total of £29.22.

He subsequently admitted to using the bank card, but said he had not been informed of the circumstances that led to it coming into his possession.

Responding to this assertion, Recorder Monteith said: “You were unaware of how it had been obtained, but you knew it was wrong to use the card.”

After committing these offences Thistlethwaite, who has an extensive criminal record of 130 offences from 59 convictions, was recalled to prison.

He pleaded guilty to charges of burglary and fraud by false representation, relating to this set of offences, at an earlier hearing.

Joy Merriam, defending, said: “When he was released [from prison] in August 2018 he was informed his father was terminally ill with cancer and only had months to live. He did his best to keep out of trouble for almost a year.

“Sadly, his father died in February 2019 and that’s when he started taking Class A drugs again.”

“He doesn't have any recollection of committing the burglary because he was drunk due to being upset about his dad,” added Ms Merriam.

Recorder Monteith sentenced Thistlethwaite to 58 weeks in prison.

“I am satisfied that your previous convictions and the fact you were on license aggravates these offences so significantly that only an immediate custodial sentence will suffice,” said Recorder Monteith.

Speaking after the hearing, PC Zed Gulzar, investigating officer from Sheffield, said: “Thistlethwaite was arrested after being identified from extensive CCTV work. He has fully admitted the offences and I welcome the sentence passed.

“We will continue to work hard to pursue those that seek to harm the public through their criminality, and try to keep the people of South Yorkshire safe from criminals such as Thistlethwhaite.”