Burglar praised by judge in court

A heroin addict who stole from a monastery, a supermarket, a beauty spa and a hospital has been congratulated by a senior judge.

Damien Wood, who admitted a string of thefts last year, will have to complete 180 hours of unpaid work for his crimes.

Leeds Crown Court heard on Monday how the 36-year-old had made progress in overcoming his drug addiction after the Recorder of Leeds, Judge Peter Collier QC, deferred sentencing him for six months.

Judge Collier told Wood this week: “Well done. You have survived the deferred sentence.

“You have done everything I have asked of you and more.”

He sentenced Wood on Tuesday to 120 hours unpaid work for five counts of burglary and one each of shoplifting, handling stolen goods, failing to attend a follow-up assessment and failing to surrender.

The court heard in October how Wood’s crime spree had begun in May when he gave up treatment for his heroin addiction without dealing with related psychological issues.

On May 5 he was seen on CCTV footage putting meat into a bag without paying for it at the Tesco Express in Huddersfield road, Mirfield.

The next day, he broke into Eastthorpe Hall health and beauty spa, also in Huddersfield Road, Mirfield, and took stock worth £2,109.

Wood stole cash and other items from the Community of the Resurrection monastery in Battyeford on May 10. There, he was seen on CCTV after he forced open an electronic door.

He broke into the Ship Inn pub in Steanard Lane two days later, stealing two gaming machines and three televisions at a cost to the pub of £3,709.30 in damage and stolen items.

The day after, Wood committed two further burglaries at Dewsbury and District Hospital.

First, he stole a manager’s ID pass from an office, then he used it to get into Fittern House accommodation block, where he stole a television. This incident cost the hospital £1,650 because the doors that Wood used the pass to open had to be recalibrated.

Wood, of Foxroyd Lane Estate, Dewsbury, had pleaded guilty to all nine offences but Judge Collier QC deferred sentencing him so he could attempt to deal with the heroin addiction he has had since he was 13.

On Tuesday, Judge Collier QC told Wood: “You are now back on track and provided you continue to work with Narcotics Anonymous there is a hope you will you stay off your addiction to drugs and other addictions that may present themselves to you, as you clearly have an addictive personality.”