Bungling thief back in court drunk

David Stokle
David Stokle

A SCRAP thief who ended up dangling upside down on a fence in a botched getaway has appeared in court again.

David Stokle was arrested for being drunk and disorderly in Tower Street, Hartlepool, a week after he was left hanging from a fence by his shoelace – as reported by the Mail on Thursday.

The bungling thief had gone into the Easy Skips yard, in Casebourne Road, Hartlepool, to steal three wagon batteries and ended up dangling with his head suspended above the floor when he was making his escape over the fence.

He panicked and dialled 999 and was arrested and charged with theft by finding on February 25.

The 28-year-old’s latest offence happened in Tower Street, off Church Street, in Hartlepool, when CCTV operators spotted him causing problems with door staff.

Police were called as Stokle was walking away and he swore at them and continued being abusive.

He was arrested and charged with being drunk and disorderly on March 4.

Stokle, of Brierton Lane, Hartlepool, pleaded guilty to the offence when he appeared before magistrates on Monday.

Prosecuting, Joanne Hesse said: “It was 11.20pm on Friday, March 14, when the defendant was stopped by police in Tower Street after CCTV operators saw him causing a few problems with door staff.

“He started to walk away when he swore at the officers and told them he wasn’t going to stop.

“He was escorted to a police vehicle when he continued to shout and swear at officers.

“He was warned about his behaviour but he continued to shout in front of members of the public.

“He was subsequently arrested for being drunk and disorderly.”

Mitigating, Neil Taylor said his client had been picked on by police who “manufactured” the offence.

He told justices: “David Stokle has in the past had some difficulties which have brought him to court.

“But one wonders how the police have managed to manufacture a drunk and disorderly charge out of this particular case.”

He added: “David Stokle is not the type of man to ordinarily pick a fight with bouncers, but maybe on this occasion he may have been aggrieved.

“It would appear that he started to walk home, which is what the police would have probably ordered him to do.

“He was doing this already, however, and his reaction was caused by the manner in which he was approached.

“The only people he directed his language at was the police officers. He is a man with no history of being drunk and disorderly and it’s a shame that he’s here before you today quite frankly.”

Chairman of the bench John Glancey fined Stokle £30, ordered him to pay £40 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.