A thief who stole whatever he could from wherever he could he could has been jailed.
Over three months Adam Crawford ran out of supermarkets carrying baskets full of meat, lifted purses and wallets from people as they dined in restaurants and cafes and used distraction techniques on shop staff while he stole their goods.
The homeless 32-year-old admitted a string of offences in Whitstable and Herne Bay when he appeared at Canterbury Crown Court.
- Hospital chief’s interview snub marks new low for public sector transparency
- Residents face nightmare of losing their homes during works
His crimes included stealing two charity boxes and a tip jar meant for staff working in a restaurant.
He stole belongings from the guests of a hotel in Whitstable, later claiming to police he had obtained a skeleton key to all the rooms.
Victims of the stolen purses and wallets then started reporting money missing from their bank accounts as Crawford used their bank cards to pay for goods, food and alcohol at a number of shops and restaurants.
On March 9 he burgled a Herne Bay resident. The victim heard a key rattling in the front door and saw someone running from his property and then later discovered money stolen and suspicious activity on his bank card.
He also stole two Christmas trees from a B&Q store in Sunderland.
On Friday, he was jailed for five years and six months.
After the sentencing, Sgt Tom Mercer of Kent Police said: “Crawford’s offending was wide-reaching, and affected a lot of local businesses.
“It was down to the hard work of the local Canterbury policing teams, who put together all the evidence to ensure Crawford was brought to court to face up to his criminal behaviour.”