Jail for homeless Brierley Hill burglar

A BRIERLEY Hill woman who raided the home of a former boyfriend out of "need and not greed" has been locked up for 15 months.

Joanne Mulholland needed money for food and she only committed the crime to "survive" - Samantha Powis, defending, told Wolverhampton Crown Court.

She said the 25-year-old who broke into the house with drug addict Andrew Carr had found herself homeless again and she was desperate to get board and lodgings.

Miss Powis said: "She likes being in prison because she knows where her next meal is coming from and that she has a warm bed for the night."

Mulholland only committed crimes to live, stressed Miss Powis who concluded: "She has found herself homeless on so many occasions. It was done out of need and not greed."

Kevin Jones, prosecuting, said Mulholland and 19-year old Carr got into the house in Penfields Road, Stourbridge, and took goods including two TVs, a laptop, a motorbike and jewellery worth a total of £1,655.

Mulholland had lived in the house for a short time until the breakup of her relationship and she and Carr were seen loading the scrambler bike worth £500 into a taxi.

Carr, added Mr Jones, also raided another house in the area and stole a TV set but he was rumbled when his palm print was found on a wheelie bin by investigating police officers.

Mulholland, of William Street, Brierley Hill, and Carr, of Stourbridge Road, Holly Hall, both admitted burgling the house.

Carr further admitted the second burglary and breaching four suspended prison sentences imposed for offences including theft and assaulting a police officer and he was sent to a Young Offenders Institution for 27 months.

Recorder Gareth Evans QC told Mulholland he accepted she had turned to crime to get food, adding: "Your pattern of living will inevitably bring you into contact with the law if it continues."

Jas Mann, defending Carr, said he had been struggling for some time with an addiction to cannabis that was costing him £60 to £70 a day.

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