Dozy burglar’s SIM card trail

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A burglar led police straight to his loot after dropping his mobile phone’s SIM card inside the home he had just raided.

Kevin Paul Walsh, 40, ransacked the house in Bracewell Drive, Wheatley, Halifax, in the early hours of December 27 last year while a father and his 15-year-old daughter were asleep upstairs.

Prosecutor Heather Gilmore told Bradford Crown Court the girl found the SIM card on the living room floor after finding that their £400 TV was missing.

A Samsung netbook computer worth £200 had also been snatched, plus an e-reader worth £115, two cameras, three mobile phones, three sets of car keys and a wallet with £120.

Miss Gilmore said: “Police were called at 10.30am and looked through the contact details on the SIM card and found a number of names such as ‘mum’, ‘dad’, ‘me’ and ‘my other number’.”

The numbers were traced to nearby Denfield Gardens, Wheatley, where officers found the defendant – along with some of the stolen goods.

Walsh, who has eight previous burglary convictions, claimed he had found all the items in a snicket nearby.

But he was charged and went on to admit the crime at an earlier court hearing.

Miss Gilmore said: “The offence has caused a lot of distress, anxiety and sleeplessness to the complainant and his daughter.

“He doesn’t want to leave the house unattended and doesn’t want to leave his daughter on her own.

“She is distressed and fearful of being in the house alone and worried in case the defendant returns.”

Walsh was last locked up for burglary in June 2008 and was released half-way through a four-year sentence last summer.

Ken Green, mitigating, said he had lapsed back into drinking over Christmas.

Recorder Simon Jackson QC jailed Walsh for three and a half years.