Burglar says he has no memory of commercial break-ins

March 14, 2016 | By More

Court House-Sept-2013-06Home detention has been ruled out for a man with 79 convictions for burglary, who pleaded guilty to another 34 offences in the Christchurch District Court today.

Andrew Wayne Smith, a 49-year-old labourer from Mairehau, told police he had no recollection of burgling small commercial premises across the city but accepted it must be him if the police had found his fingerprints at four of the crime scenes.

He was remanded in custody for sentencing on June 15. A restorative justice meeting with the victims may be held in the meantime, and a reparation report has been ordered.

However, no report on Smith’s suitability for home detention has been ordered, meaning that type of community-based sentence will not be considered.

The police withdrew five charges today, before Smith entered his guilty pleas. Judge Brian Callaghan remanded him for sentence on 33 charges of burglary and one attempted burglary.

Defence counsel Josh Lucas said reparation had already been assessed at about $16,000 but Smith had no real ability to pay it.

The burglaries involved overnight break-ins at small business premises amongst groups of shops in Riccarton, Sydenham, Merivale, Papanui and Kaiapoi from June to August last year.

Smith would break in by forcing the front doors with a jemmy bar, or by using force to damage to framing or the glass. He targeting cash boxes and tills, or took small amounts of goods. In one burglary of a costume shop he stole a Gene Simmons KISS band face mask.

Smith was caught on video at several of the premises but had pulled his hood over his head.

The premises included hairdressers, service stations, restaurants, cafes, a pilates centre, flooring shop, health centres, cup cake shop, fabric shop, sewing shop, dietary supplements shops, pizzeria, brewery, costume hire, butchery, and bakery.

 

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