A PAIR of bungling burglars were caught red-handed attempting to steal £5,000 worth of designer clothes.

Geoffrey Stuart Dobson and Carl Jeffrey Meredith smashed their way into Barkers on Northallerton High Street and started looting the premises.

One of the inept pair tried to use sticky tape to prevent shards of glass getting on his clothing but instead got the tape stuck to himself whilst also wearing socks over his shoes to stop him leaving identifiable tracks, Teesside Crown Court heard.

Michael Bosomworth, prosecuting, said Dobson was the brains behind the plan to break into the store with Meredith roped in to act as look out but became an active participant in the ‘escapade’.

“Dobson used a hammer to smash a hole in one of the windows, he took some care in removing the glass, he taped up the edge of the hole, one assumes he was not wanting to get glass fragments on his clothing having been caught that way previously.

“In fact, it proved to be his downfall because he was wearing gloves and had difficulty cutting the tape and was using his mouth to cut up the tape and as a result a piece of tape ended up on his clothing so he could readily be identified by CCTV as a result,” he said.

The pair then started to steal thousands of pounds worth of designer clothes by stuffing them in a rucksack and hiding them in a hedge.

Police were alerted by the alarm and turned up at the scene, Dobson tried to escape and Meredith was arrested as he crawled out of the window.

Dobson, who was wearing socks over his shoes, was wrestled to the ground by pursuing officers and arrested nearby.

The court heard how the vast majority of the stolen goods were recovered.

The burglary dated back to April 29 in 2019 and had been delayed coming to court for a variety of reasons, Mr Bosomworth said.

Dobson, 44, of Hambleton View, Thirsk, formerly of Northallerton, and 33-year-old Meredith, of Park Road North, Middlesbrough, both pleaded guilty to burglary.

Glenn Parsons, representing Dobson, said his client had a long history of offending to fund his drug addiction and was fully expecting a custodial sentence after committing his latest offence to pay off debts.

And John Nixon, representing Meredith, said his client had admitted the offence immediately and told police he was struggling for cash at the time of the burglary.

Judge Timothy Stead jailed Dobson for ten months and sentenced Meredith to three months, suspended for 12-months.

“This was a serious bit of offending, even though in the end it wasn’t wholly successful,” he said. “Considerable damage was done to the premises, something like £5,000 worth of goods were appropriated, whether some of the goods were missing or not due to being scattered is not entirely clear.”

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