Mum pleads to go to jail to escape abuse

Jolyne Sturdy
Jolyne Sturdy

A young mum locked up on remand after alcohol-fuelled burgling and thieving asked a judge to keep her in jail, as she felt it was doing her good.

Burnley Crown Court heard how Jolyne Sturdy was extremely vulnerable as a result of “years of systematic abuse.” She felt custody had got her away from those exploiting her - and she could start her life again on her release.

The hearing was told how Sturdy had been “blind drunk” when she and two men terrified a Nelson householder after they invaded his property late at night. The defendant had climbed onto a wheelie bin, through a window and let her accomplices in. She had been bailed after the raid and later stole cash from a man who was “incapacitated” in the street in the early hours.

The defendant had admitted burglary and theft and had been committed for sentence by magistrates. She was jailed for 16 months. Sturdy (30), of Sackville Street, Brierfield, had almost 60 offences on her record.

Prosecutor Miss Rachel White said victim Dwayne Wood was at his home on Hallam Road, Nelson, at about 11pm, last December 5th.

He heard a noise and found a woman in his kitchen, searching through his cupboards. Two men then walked in through the back door. Mr Wood slammed the kitchen door shut, ran through the living room and out of the front door and called his mother, who phoned the police. An officer attended and saw Sturdy coming out of the back of the property and she was arrested. The victim discovered an amplifier and three ornamental Samurai swords, together worth £30 has been taken.

The prosecutor said Sturdy was bailed with a curfew and on March 9th, she was seen on CCTV in Burnley town centre, rummaging through the pockets of a man asleep on St James Street at 3am. Police were informed, the defendant was identified nearby and she was arrested.

Mr Nick Dearing (defending) said: “She is a young lady who is extremely vulnerable as a result of years of systematic abuse. She continues to bear the physical and mental scars.

“She is a young lady who recognises that alcohol is a problem and she has been abstinent for significant periods, which has led to a reduction, if not a complete cessation, in her offending.”