Welwyn Garden City burglar jailed for 4 years 6 months

17/06/2014

A Welwyn Garden City burglar who was given the chance to turn his life around by coming off drugs was offending again within a week of being released on bail.

Dean Harper, 40, was stealing just six days after being freed for assessment on Hertfordshire's Choices and Consequences programme, which aims to put a stop to prolific criminals' activities.  Those on C2 must stick to a number of requirements set by the court. These include close monitoring, attending drugs treatment courses and having continual drug testing. In addition they must also stop committing crimes.

Today, Tuesday, 17 June 2014, prosecutor Neil King told St Albans Crown Court that on 24 March this year Harper breached the conditions by stealing a purse from Stanborough School and two purses from the Gosling Sports Stadium.  He had been bailed on the 18 March after admitting stealing from the doctors' rest area at the QE2 hospital, from Stanborough school and from the house of a friend in Lea Common, WGC.

Harper, of Moatwood Green, Welwyn Garden City, admitted two domestic burglaries and three non domestic burglaries. He asked for 92 offences to be taken into consideration.

Andel Singh, defending, said Harper had been diagnosed with "emotionally unstable personality disorder."  He said he accepted he was a 3 strike burglar  -  a defendant who faces a minimum 3 year sentence, having committed three burglaries of people's homes.

Mr Singh said: "He knows he is facing a term of imprisonment. He is supported by his partner who is standing by him. When he is released he will go back to his family in Guildford and will not return to Hertfordshire, where he has committed a lot of his offending."  He said Harper had asked for a lot of offences to be taken into consideration, which had helped the police detect crimes they would not otherwise have solved.

Jailing him, Judge Andrew Bright QC said: "This is no more than the latest instalment of acquisitive offences dating as far back as 1988 when you were a juvenile.  You were granted bail in March for assessment on the C2 programme and were given a chance to turn your life around. It is sadness to me that within a week on bail you were re-offending."

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