Portchester burglar who ‘went off the rails’ is jailed

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A SERIAL burglar who went on a crime spree after losing his job has been jailed.

Scott McGiffen turned to drink and drugs and went ‘completely off the rails’ after finding himself out of work.

The 21-year-old, from White Hart Lane, Portchester, committed four burglaries in just a fortnight across Portsmouth.

McGiffen first broke into his former employers’ site at ABC Glass Processing Ltd in Dundas Lane, Copnor, stealing £110 cash on October 28 last year.

Six days later he stole a 32in TV from a home in Magdala Road, Cosham.

A day later he broke into games store Fourth Place in Cosham High Street.

However on that occasion nothing was stolen.

McGiffen then targeted Edinburgh House Care Home for older people in Sundridge Close, Cosham.

He broke into a communal area at about 3.30am while residents were sleeping and fled with a 32in TV.

McGiffen was arrested two days later and quizzed by police about the crimes.

A footprint taken at the scene of the burglary in Magdala Road, Cosham, matched his footwear and McGiffen was snared.

Barry McElduff, defending McGiffen at Portsmouth Crown Court, said: ‘He pleaded guilty to all four matters before your honour which are in a two-week period in which he went completely off the rails, lost his job, lost his accommodation, took to the drink and drugs, and three of the four counts that your honour’s dealing with is him resolving grievances in a spectacularly foolish way.’

McGiffen pleaded guilty to four counts of burglary.

Sentencing McGiffen to three years in jail, judge Patrick Hooton said: ‘I realise that you bitterly regret what you have done.

‘In fact, you probably even more bitterly regret the fact that you were caught, but two of these are dwelling house burglaries – that can’t be overlooked.

‘There is no sentence what can be devised that doesn’t mean you go inside for that.’