A FRUSTRATED landlord has said he is “stunned and shocked” at the sentence issued to a former Padiham tenant, who left him to deal with a £4,000 bill.
Jordan Pickford (21), of Ingham Street, admitted stealing copper, a water cylinder and even the kitchen sink from his rented home, also in Ingham Street, on July 14th. He also admitted smashing a double-glazed window at the house, causing £100-worth of damage.
He was given a 12-week custodial sentence at Burnley Magistrates’ Court for the theft, and a community order to which he was subject, was revoked.
Mr Edward Gill, landlord of the Ingham Street property, has now spoken out following the sentencing to raise awareness to others working in a similar field.
He set up Gill and Grierson Properties with his sister, Rosalind Grierson, about eight years ago, and now owns six properties in Burnley and Padiham. The properties are locally managed by Mr Paul Green.
Mr Gill, who is based in Nottinghamshire and who will receive no compensation for the damage caused by Pickford, said: “I would warn other landlords to check out their tenants carefully, and be mindful.
“Twenty-eight days in custody ... they are having a joke. I’m stunned and shocked. It seems there is no justice. If he had gone down for six months, fair enough. I’m absolutely livid.
“We have to jump through hoops as landlords. It is completely one-sided.
“What message does his sentence send out to others? I just despair with the legal system.”
According to Mr Gill, Pickford committed the offences after he was asked to leave the rented property and was handed a one-month notice.
He said: “He had not been paying rent, and we had been more than reasonable with him.
“He’d said he would catch up with it, but he never did.
“We went through all the correct procedures, and gave him his month’s notice.
“The theft was clearly premeditated, as he had isolated the water before doing it.
“To add insult to injury, he then went and started bricking the window when a new tenant came in.
“We can’t afford this at the moment. Any revenue we are getting, we are having to throw into getting the property back up to scratch.
“It is disconcerting, and it is frustrating.
“My sister and I work very well as a team, and this is just very demoralising.