Kettering man caught red-handed after throwing stolen cigarettes in the trash


A man from Kettering who broke into a local store and hid stolen cigarettes in a nearby trash can avoided jail.

Jason MacDonald, 37, was “caught red-handed” by police leaving Ria’s mini-market on Mill Road in Wellingborough.

The thug, from Regent Street, Kettering, was apprehended in the early hours of Tuesday morning January 4 after breaking into the store.

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Prosecutor Stella Moses said: “Police received a report from a local resident who said he saw someone dressed in black fiddling with the shutters of the store.

“The witness also said he saw the suspect walk away from the store.

“The police then went to the scene and saw this defendant go out through the window.

“The accused had a cigarette in his mouth and a number of lighters in his hand. The officers confronted him and he was subsequently arrested.”

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MacDonald told officers, “I just had queers and it’s from over there,” and they got three packs of cigarettes from him.

He also pinched a white iPhone with a sticker on it.

The stolen cigarette packs were worth £ 187.60 in total, along with the phone and £ 23 in cash.

Miss Moses added: “The accused was caught in the act and taken into custody for questioning, but he refused.

“He has a number of convictions recorded against him for quantitative offense, including burglary.”

A police dog also followed the scent of the accused on the side of the building where a wheelie bin was located.

In the trash there were other bags of cigarettes and coins that had been taken from the store.

The defendant has been taken into custody several times, the court said, with his last custodial sentence handed down in January 2020.

He was sentenced to 20 weeks in prison for this offense.

During the sentencing, the magistrates said: “We will give you a chance.

“We are prioritizing compensation because you broke this merchant’s window. There will be £ 100 compensation for them.

“We are going to tie it to your benefits and it should come out at £ 5 a week.”

MacDonald was sentenced to 24 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months.

He told the court that he would no longer commit offenses, to which the magistrate replied: “We hope so. I’m sure you’ve said this before, but we’ll have to be right.”

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