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Burglary teen escapes jail sentence
8:50am Monday 10th September 2012 in News
A TEENAGER who set up a burglary at the shop where she was a trainee manager has walked free from court.
Savannah Leigh, 19, who now lives at Church Walk, Upper Stratton , made sure she was at home playing Scrabble with her mum and boyfriend at the time a friend carried out the raid.
But the teen, previously of Beech Avenue, Pinehurst , did not realise the alarm company would identify her key as the one used to disable the system.
And within hours of reporting the break-in when she arrived for work the following morning she found herself arrested.
Hannah Squire, prosecuting told Swindon Crown Court the duty manager of Family Bargains locked up the store on the Mannington Retail Park at 6pm on Sunday, July 1.
She said CCTV footage showed the unit was entered shortly after 10pm that night and the figure went to the alarm panel.
After disarming the system the raider then went straight to the office area, opened the safe, and made off with the day’s takings which were £2,434.40.
“They were out by 10.10pm. They were in the store for just short of eight minutes,” she said.
The alarm was raised by Leigh when she arrived for work.
“When the alarm company were alerted they knew which key had deactivated it, and it was Miss Leigh’s key at 10pm. She was arrested that very same day.
“She was spoken to under caution and said the keys were in her possession all the time. She said she had been at home playing Scrabble with her mother and boyfriend.”
But when she was formally interviewed she admitted she had got a friend to carry out the burglary while she stayed at home.
She said she had planned to get a cut of the money but it has never been recovered and she has not said who her accomplice was. She admitted burglary.
Rob Ross , defending, said he accepted the case merited a custodial sentence but asked if it could be suspended as she had never been in trouble before.
“It could be summed up as a thoughtless act of a young person who had no idea how easy it would be to trace back the entry to the premises to her,” he said.
Passing sentence Judge Douglas Field said: “Bearing in mind your good character and age I am prepared to suspend the sentence.”
He jailed her for eight months suspended for a year and put her on a night time curfew for 12 weeks and told her to complete 130 hours of unpaid work.