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This drug addict broke into a flat through a roof and stole a TV while the occupant was away for three weeks.

Derby Crown Court heard how Liam Mitchell then hid the television down an alleyway next to a branch of Birds the bakers.

The 21-year-old, who has a previous conviction for burglary, was recognised on CCTV and arrested.

When he initially appeared at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court to plead guilty to his latest offence, he asked to be remanded into custody as his addiction to class A drugs means he would steal again to fund it.

Judge Nirmal Shant QC sentenced Mitchell to 10 months imprisonment on March 25.

But on that occasion, due to the coronavirus pandemic, he was unable to physically see his own barrister, Stuart Newsam, during the proceedings due to social distancing.

So this week, Judge Shant brought him back before the court via videolink from HMP Ranby, where he is serving and explained to him new legislation means he needs to have his sentence explained to him in the presence of Mr Newsam who appeared from his home via Skype.

She said: “Mr Mitchell, nothing has changed in terms of your sentence.

“Since I sentenced you new legislation has been introduced which means I have to explain to you that everyone involved in proceedings needs to be here.

“This is simply confirmation of your sentence according to the new legislation.”

Sarah Slater, prosecuting, said the offence took place at a flat which is part of supported housing in Midland Road, Swadlincote, on February 14.

She said the victim had gone to stay in Leicester for three weeks and left his accommodation secure.

Miss Slater said at 2pm staff watched on CCTV as Mitchell, of no fixed address, left the property carrying the TV.

She said he was challenged and admitted to stealing it and leaving it down an alleyway next to Birds.

It was then reported to the police and the victim was told.

Miss Slater said staff at Birds put the TV inside and police recovered it from them.

She said Mitchell was arrested on February 17 and admitted to entering via a roof next to a window to the flat and leaving the door open.

He said he then went back and stole the TV with another man.

Miss Slater said that male was spoken to but said he wasn’t involved in the actual burglary and wasn’t prosecuted.

Mitchell has a previous conviction for a house burglary dating back to June 6, 2017.

This content was originally published here.

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