Jailed for damage trail and burglary
A DRUG dealer has been jailed for a crime spree in which he broke into and vandalised a village hall and smashed up a North Cornwall primary school.
Gary Jones also stole a charity tin after breaking into shops as he defied a driving ban and toured around North Devon and North Cornwall committing offences.
He was finally arrested after crashing his car in a country lane and police then found he had been dealing cannabis from his home in Bude.
During the space of a few days he broke into Stratton Primary School and the Sutcombe Memorial Hall near Holsworthy and deliberately wrecked them by letting off fire extinguishers.
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Jones, aged 24, also had more than £4,000 worth of stolen quad bikes at his home which had been stolen from farms around the area, Exeter Crown Court was told. Jones, of Downs View, Bude, admitted possession of cannabis with intent to supply, four burglaries, handling and driving while disqualified. He asked for eight more cases of burglary and handling to be considered.
He was jailed for two years by Judge Francis Gilbert, QC, who told him:"You have an appalling criminal record with 30 previous court appearances and I have to sentence you for offences including burglaries in which you set off fire extinguishers.
"In the memorial hall you not only set off the extinguisher but smashed a cooker, causing extensive damage.
"You have also admitted your ninth offence of driving while disqualified. You have no regard whatsoever for the law and other road users.
"You are going to have to learn the hard way that the time has come for you to keep out of trouble if you really do want to change your life and go to university."
Mr David Bowen, for the prosecution, said in the space of three days in April Jones broke into Kerry's butchers and Martin's hardware shops in Bradworthy, the Memorial Hall in Sutcombe and Stratton Primary School.
He stole a charity collecting tin from the butcher's shop and a £2,000 piece of equipment from the school and had a number of stolen quad bikes from a £4,100 raid, at his home.
He broke his driving ban and crashed a car near Holsworthy.
Mr Martin Pearce, for the defence, said Jones's girlfriend was pregnant and he wanted to use this as a catalyst to change his lifestyle and return to education. He said: "He is motivated to lead a better life."