A serial criminal who targeted the same restaurant twice during a city centre burglary spree has been jailed.
William Trotter, who has 51 previous convictions for 99 offences including 40 for burglary, smashed his way into the ‘Venice’ Italian eatery in Sunderland.
Prosecutor Paul Cross said that Trotter was recognised on CCTV and when arrested on May 8, he struggled and fought with police officers in an attempt to get away.
But while on bail pending investigation, he struck again three months later on August 19 by breaking into Media Savvy, also in Sunderland, where he stoletools and equipment worth around £7,500.
Two days later Trotter broke into Yuvraaj Restaurant where he took bottles of spirits worth £600, and caused £500 damage.
Then on August 27, he targeted the Venice restaurant again.
Mr Cross said: “£900 of spirits were taken, again overnight and again on CCTV and he was recognised on the CCTV.
“On arrest in relation to the three latter burglaries, he said ‘If it’s the tools – I’ve gave stuff back. My face was all over Facebook. A bloke came to my door and said if I gave them back he wouldn’t call the police.'”
The court heard that Trotter was referring to stolen tools that had been returned to Media Savvy, however, these were not believed to be the correct ones.
The 41-year-old, of Ashill Court, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to four charges of burglary and one of assaulting an emergency worker.
Mr Recorder Tahir Khan KC told him: “I have to sentence you in relation of a number of offences which comprises four burglaries of commercial premises.
“Two of the burglaries occurred at the same restaurant. All of the offences have the same hallmark – going out in the early hours in the morning andcommitting these offences.
“Property is stolen and a great deal of heartache is caused to those who are trying to run these businesses.
“Your position is made significantly more serious because you have a shockingly bad record for burglary.”
In relation to the assault on the policeman, he said: “The job of the police is hard enough without people like you trying to fight them.”
The judge sentenced Trotter to two years and six months behind bars.
Jennifer Coxon, mitigating, said: “It’s clear Mr Trotter has a very long record and he doesn’t shy away from that.”
Ms Coxon added that Trotter has spent the last few months in custody which would count towards his sentence.
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