Windy burglar raided Hartlepool convenience store

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A burglar used the cover of wind noise to break into a convenience store.

Sam Rookes and an unknown accomplice spent two hours attacking the reinforced door with crow bars and a jemmy, Hartlepool Magistrates’ Court heard.

“The burglary took place at Kullar News in Flint Walk in Hartlepool,” said David Carmichael, prosecuting.

“The premises were left locked and secure on the evening of December 23.

“When staff opened the next morning, they discovered the stock room had been broken into.

“Cigarettes and alcohol valued at about £300 had been taken.”

The court heard Rookes was identified on CCTV.

“He made full admissions when interviewed by police,” added Mr Carmichael. “He said he had burgled the shop with an accomplice who he refused to name.

“Rookes said they had picked a windy night because they thought the wind noise would mask the sound of their activities.”

Rookes, 45, of Rogeri Place, Hartlepool, admitted burglary on December 23.

He has previous convictions for 82 offences, including 25 thefts.

John Relton, defending, said in mitigation: “Mr Rookes’ last conviction was in 2012.

“He recently became aware of part of his background which I don’t wish to go into in open court.

“But the revelations caused him great personal stress and anxiety, and he was asked to leave the family home. He is now back in a stable environment.”

Rookes was ordered to pay £315 in costs and compensation. The money will be deducted from his benefits.