One-man crime wave back in prison

Edmund Carley
Edmund Carley
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A JUDGE has slammed a one-man crime wave who left a Blackpool guest house owner terrified in her own home.

Edmund Carley has a staggering 84 offences on his criminal record – mostly for theft and burglaries of homes and businesses.

His latest sickening raid saw him steal more than a £1,000 worth of computer equipment.

The break-in at the guesthouse on Hornby Road saw the 33-year-old heroin-using thief clamber through a hatch leading from the reception area into the owner’s private quarters.

After stealing the goods he then trawled the resort’s pubs and streets to sell them.

His frightened victim said: “I can’t stop thinking about it. This person has gone into my bedroom and interfered with my belongings.”

Both police and a local councillor today told The Gazette they were delighted Carley had been locked up for two years which would help protect vulnerable residents.

The victim added: “I am constantly on edge and worrying.”

Carley, of Erdington Road, Blackpool, appeared at Preston Crown Court for sentencing after pleading guilty to burglary and asking for a further offence of theft to be taken into consideration.

Jailing him, Judge Heather Lloyd told Carley: “You call yourself a sneak thief. You are not. You are a burglar.

“You go into people’s homes and violate those homes.

“I’m sure if somebody did that to your home while your partner and baby were in you would be outraged.”

Jeremy Grout-Smith, prosecuting, told the court Carley’s latest offence happened on March 17.

He ransacked the private quarters of the guest house but left his fingerprints behind.

The defendant went on to tell police he had trawled the resort’s pubs and streets with the laptops and had got £60 to £80 each for them.

After the hearing, Talbot ward councillor Sarah Riding told The Gazette: “It’s good news he is back in prison because burglary is the lowest crime which violates people in their personal space.

“The impact it can have on victims is absolutely horrendous because they can be frightened to leave their homes.

“His actions are horrendous and the fact he has targeted the most vulnerable people is one of the things we need to be conscious about and make sure we protect the people affected. On a wider scale, more needs to be done to rehabilitate him because it’s a vicious circle if people start to repeat crimes, get caught and then end up back in prison.”

Sgt Nicholas Connaughton, of Blackpool Police, added: “Carley is a prolific and opportunist thief and I am pleased he is now behind bars.

“Burglary is an intrusive crime which has a devastating impact on victims and we will continue to focus our efforts on those who persistently commit burglaries.”

The defendant was last in the dock in Ferbruary after stealing a £405 gaming console from a display window at Bright House on Abingdon Street.

Janet Ironfield, defending, said Carley had genuine remorse and visible shame for committing the burglary in March. It was one of a clutch of offences he had carried out around that time.

Following his release from jail three-and-a-half years ago, the defendant had pulled his life together, she added.

There had been a problem with benefits, leaving him and his partner with £20 a week to live on. He was given a new drugs worker and his methadone prescription was reduced.

Miss Ironfield added: “He wasn’t able to cope. He felt taking street heroin was likely to be safer than taking street methadone.”

Jailing him for two years and four months, Judge Lloyd noted a pre-sentence report said Carley had been desperate for money at the time to buy food for his baby.

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