Rooftop burglar caught ‘red-handed’ jailed for raids

Burglar Michael Smith, 30, of New Road, Portsmouth, was jailed at Portsmouth Crown Court after being caught red-handed on a rooftop Picture: Tania Hollies
Burglar Michael Smith, 30, of New Road, Portsmouth, was jailed at Portsmouth Crown Court after being caught red-handed on a rooftop Picture: Tania Hollies

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A THIEF caught on a rooftop by police after raiding a house asked officers: ‘What burglary are you arresting me for?’

Drug addict Michael Smith, 30, was on ‘self-destruct’ when he raided two homes and a business in Portsmouth over a three-month period.

Michael Smith, 30, of New Road, Portsmouth Picture: Hampshire police

Michael Smith, 30, of New Road, Portsmouth Picture: Hampshire police

But Portsmouth Crown Court heard the dad-of-five was caught ‘red-handed’ after raiding a home when a neighbour in Northern Parade, Stamshaw, raised the alarm.

Police called the absent householder and got into the house to find an open loft window and Smith perched on a roof a few doors down.

Now Smith, who has 36 previous court appearances for 93 offences, has been jailed for 29 months..

Sentencing, judge Christine Agnew QC said ‘there was no doubt’ Smith was in a ‘spiral of offending’.

You were caught red-handed

Judge Christine Agnew QC

Addressing the final burglary she said: ‘In relation to count four you were caught red-handed, almost literally.’

She added: ‘You were found sitting on top of the roof, and asking the police, essentially, what it was you were being arrested for, which burglary was it you were being arrested for.’

Prosecutor Martyn Booth told how prior to the February 7 rooftop burglary where he took an iPhone 5, he had broken into red-letter day firm Golden Moments, in Winter Road, Southsea on December 16.

He stole £120 in cash, a Dyson vacuum cleaner, TV and projector, costing £2,500. Blood linked him to the crime.

Smith, of New Road, Portsmouth, also stole credit cards and a purse after getting into a home in Byerley Road, Fratton, on January 15 through an open kitchen window.

He admitted three burglaries and one fraud, relating to using the card at New Kwiki Mart, Southsea.

Louisa Bagley, for Smith said he had had a crack addiction since the age of 18.

One of burglar Michael Smith’s victims has told of feeling her home has been ‘violated’.

Larayne Reeman, 38, discovered in horror her kitchen had been ransacked by Smith after he got in through an open kitchen window.

Her home, in Byerley Road, Fratton, was hit by Smith in the early hours of January 15.

Speaking after he was jailed the HR manager said: ‘It’s my little house, I bought that house on my own.

‘Everyone else has got kids, I have a house and that’s my baby.’

Smith, who appeared over a videolink, shouted an apology after he was sentenced.