Man convicted following spate of theft from motor vehicles in Portsmouth
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A 37-year-old man has been convicted of a number of offences involving theft from vehicles in Portsmouth.
Christopher Walker, of no fixed abode, appeared at Portsmouth Magistrates Court on Monday (7 February) charged with two counts of theft from motor vehicle and one count of obstructing a constable in the execution of her duty.
The charges relate to the following two incidents:
On January 1 2022 at 5.50pm, the window of a silver Volkswagen Passat parked on Isambard Brunel Road was smashed and a wallet containing approximately £400 was taken.
On February 2 2022, entry was gained to a parked Ford Transit van on Canal Walk at around 3.30pm and Apple Air Pods were taken. The Air Pods were tracked to the CEX store on Commercial Road where Walker ran from an officer at around 4pm. He was later arrested, charged and remanded in custody.
He appeared at Portsmouth Magistrates Court on Monday where he pleaded guilty to all offences and was given a six month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.
Portsmouth Central Inspector Pete Smith said: “While we appreciate that the local community may feel let down by the outcome in this instance, please be assured that our local neighbourhood policing team, along with our Criminal Investigation Department, put forward a strong case and recommendations for a custodial sentence to the courts with the Crown Prosecution Service.
“The fact that Walker has received this suspended sentence means that he will go straight to prison should he commit further offences in the next 18 months. We are hopeful that he will now receive the relevant support by local commissioned services to rehabilitate him, educate him and work with him to ensure that he does not commit further offences in the future.
“We recognise what an intrusive and traumatic crime theft from motor vehicles can be for its victims and the impact that it can have on people’s lives. Our officers will always seek to bring those to justice for the crimes that they have committed, supported by the recommended outcomes of the court.”
We would like to take this opportunity to remind you of some simple steps you can take to protect your vehicle and property:
Always lock your vehicle and close windows and the sun roof to prevent ‘fishing’
Take valuables with you when you leave your vehicle – your mobile phone, coins for the car park, sunglasses, packs of medication or other items that can earn quick cash are irresistible to the opportunist thief. Wallets, handbags, purses, laptops, credit cards and other valuables should never be left in an unattended vehicle.
Hide electrical items and leave no clues – leaving Sat Nav mounts, suction cup marks on windows or cables on view gives it away that you have left a Sat Nav, smartphone or other device in your car. Even if they can’t see the Sat Nav or iPad they might still break in to see if it’s stored in the car, out of sight.
Where possible, park in well-lit and busier areas – it can take less than 30 seconds to break into a vehicle. Parking in well-lit areas and busy streets increases the chances of a thief being seen, so they’re more likely to steer clear.