Man who urinated in St Annes church is jailed

Our Lady Star of the Sea RC church, St Annes
Our Lady Star of the Sea RC church, St Annes
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A would-be burglar who urinated in a church has been jailed for eight months.

A horrified parish priest at Our Lady Star of the Sea Church in St Annes Road East, St Annes, found the urine filled bucket and immediately checked the CCTV.

Michael Robinson

Michael Robinson

It showed prolific thief Michael Robinson, 53, of Watson Road, South Shore, skulking around the church checking safes, before reaching through a gate into the church’s charity shop and stealing a bag.

Preston Crown Court heard the incident happened on September 5 while the church was open to the public.

Prosecuting, Lucy Coulson said he had 35 convictions for 93 offences, and that the burglary was aggravated by the soiling element.

A probation officer told the court Robinson believes a cigarette given to him by former associates on the day had been spiked with the substance Spice.

The officer added: “He tells me that’s the last he remembers for three days.

“A friend of his came looking for him during those three days because they had seen this offence on social media, and he handed himself into police.

“He doesn’t recall urinating in the church.

“He said that’s the actions of someone not in his right mind.

“He presents as mortified people might think he deliberately acted in that way.”

The court heard the dad-of-four, who used to be a chef, had been living in a housing association flat for two years and has distanced himself from previous ‘associates’.

The officer said his family are disgusted with his behaviour and had refused to come to court to support him.

The Roman Catholic church is part of the Kirkham Deanery and the Lancaster Diocese and is more than 100 years old.

Judge said

Recorder David Swinnerton: “ Churches are vulnerable to people who want to go in and try and steal because as a part of what they do they like to remain open to members of public. You checked the safes to see what you could find. You then put your hand into the charity shop entrance and took a bag to look to see what was in it to see what you could steal - within a charity shop, which is despicable.”