Serial burglar sent back to prison for raiding three Sheffield homes in two weeks

A career criminal who burgled three Sheffield homes in two weeks to feed his drug addiction has been sent back to prison.

Wednesday, 2nd October 2019, 17:50 pm
Updated Friday, 4th October 2019, 14:02 pm

38-year-old Steven Reynolds carried out the first burglary on the evening October 8 last year, when he made his way into a gated flat complex in Sheffield through the broken gates.

Reynolds proceeded to break in to a ground floor flat through the open window, and was confronted by the flat’s occupant when he returned a short time later.

Stephanie Hollis, prosecuting, told Sheffield Crown Court: “His duvet was behind the front door, wedging it shut. He could see it was covered in blood. He could see the cupboards were open.

“When he went into his bedroom he could see that things had been pulled from under his bed. He went through to the living room where there was a confrontation with the defendant.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“The defendant said: ‘I’m waiting for my mate Jay, he lives here’.”

The occupant told Reynolds that his friend did not live there and told him to leave, at which point he picked up the duvet and left the flat.

DNA taken from the hallway was linked to Reynolds.

Ms Hollis said Reynolds struck again eight days later on October 16, when he broke into a house in Whirlow, by smashing a downstairs window using a rock.

During the course of the burglary, Reynolds injured the owner’s dog and stole possessions worth an estimated £10,000, including an £8,000 road bike.

When the owner returned to the property, he found his home had been ransacked and found his dog locked in the bathroom.

Reynolds caused £3,000 to the property, and the family also needed to take the dog to the vet and to buy a prescription, which cost a total of £246.

He also left blood at the scene of this burglary, linking him to the crime.

Then, on October 24, Reynolds broke into a ground floor flat in Burngreave, after gaining access through balcony doors which open to the bedroom.

A woman living in the flat was sleeping in an adjoining room when Reynolds broke in.

Once inside, he stole a number of items including a mobile phone, wallets and a Fit Bit, as well as £875 cash, and documents including driving licenses, birth certificates and passports.

Reynolds was then captured on CCTV at a nearby Tesco using bank cards from the stolen wallets to buy items costing £61.

He was finally arrested on October 26 last year.

Ms Hollis told the court that Reynolds was jailed on January 14 this year for burgling St Wilfred’s Place in Queen’s Road in October.

He had not been charged in relation to the other offences by the time of this hearing, and so was dealt with for that offence alone – for which he was sentenced to the mandatory minimum sentence of three years for being a ‘third strike’ burglar.

Reynolds, who has an extensive criminal record of some 92 offences – including 43 for various burglaries, pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count of fraud at an earlier hearing.

Richard Adams, defending, said Reynolds had been ‘dogged’ with an addiction to Class A drugs for most of adult life, and that this had been the motivation for much of his offending.

Recorder Amy Mannion said she would need to take Reynolds’ January prison sentence into consideration, as well as the 11 months – which amounts to the equivalent of a 22 month sentence – he has already served.

She sentenced him to an additional 26 months behind bars.

- South Yorkshire Police has been asked to provide a custody image of Reynolds