Charity worker’s crime spree

Burnley Magistrates Court.

Burnley Magistrates Court.

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A charity worker sent to do good in Burnley went on a drunken burgling and wrecking night-time spree in the town, a court heard.

Burnley Magistrates’ Court was told how ex-con Michael Johnson (28) targeted three shops in the centre. He smashed his way into Holland and Barrett on The Mall and loaded pills and tablets into a wheelie bin ready to take away – but couldn’t explain why.

Johnson, who has a record for burglary, left blood at the scene and was caught on CCTV.

He also broke a shop window round the corner at Perfect Home and damaged a window at the Card Factory. CCTV showed Johnson reaching into Perfect Home to try and get at a television.

Johnson was said to have had a “meltdown” after a row with his girlfriend when he got in trouble again on November 5th.

The hearing was told Johnson, a community member at homeless charity Emmaus, had been sent from Salford to do charitable acts with its Burnley branch. Emmaus Salford, which is said to have turned Johnson’s life around, has vowed not to give up on him.

The defendant, of Fitzwarren Street, Salford, admitted burglary, attempted burglary and damaging a front door. He was given 10 weeks in jail, suspended for a year, with 150 hours unpaid work and must pay £600 compensation.