[A] HOMELESS criminal who went on a burglary spree in Carlisle and Penrith, stealing cars to order, has been locked up.
Nathan Stewart, 21, pinched keys to vehicles worth a total of more than £40,000 which were then swiftly transported out of Cumbria to the Merseyside area for sale.
Between July and January, Stewart burgled homes at night as occupants, including children, slept. Carlisle Crown Court heard on one occasion a crude “hook and cane” method was used to “fish” car keys from a property without entering.
Six vehicles were snatched, including a £25,000 BMW, and many weren’t recovered, with householders said to have been caused “anxiety and trauma”. Some had since beefed up their domestic security, and prosecutor Jon Close said of one victim: “She doesn’t feel safe in her own home.”
Stewart admitted four burglary charges and seven thefts, while his 18-year-old girlfriend at the time, Akisha Fielding, admitted being carried in one of the stolen cars. The pair, both of no fixed address, were sentenced today (WED) by Judge James Adkin.
Stewart – a man with 45 crimes to his name – was jailed for 45 months and told by Judge Adkin he had committed “what could fairly be described as professional, acquisitive offences”. Fielding – who had spent seven weeks in custody – was handed a 14-week prison term.