Thief stole a laptop from a parked car at a motorway service station

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

A thief stole a briefcase, laptop and paperwork from a car which had been parked at Trowell motorway service station.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Wednesday, February 28, how Thomas Cain, 23, managed to get inside the car and pulled the rear seats down to commit the theft.

Becky Allsop, prosecuting, said: “The complainant had parked at Trowell service station off the M1 southbound carriageway.

“He got out of the vehicle, locked the car and went to get a sandwich for five minutes or so.

“He saw a male when he was coming back at the back door of his car which was open and he saw him walking off with the laptop.”

The complainant also saw the defendant getting into a car and driving off but he managed to note the registration of the Audi vehicle and this was handed to the police, according to Mrs Allsop.

Police later spotted the vehicle on the northbound carriageway of the M1 motorway and the vehicle was stopped near Meadowhall shopping centre and the laptop was found on the back seat.

Cain told police he had been driving from Sheffield to Nottingham and he had seen someone getting out of their vehicle and saw that the lights did not flash when the owner pressed his key fob so he looked inside the vehicle to see if there was anything to steal.

The defendant said he realised he could pull the rear seats down and the briefcase was taken from the area and he disposed of the briefcase and paperwork and kept the laptop.

He also admitted to police that he did not have a driving licence and he had no insurance.

Cain, of Newman Road, Sheffield, pleaded guilty to theft, driving without a licence and to driving without insurance after the incident on February 12.

Defence solicitor Michael Clark said Cain is ashamed of himself but he has been struggling financially and he fell foul to temptation.

Magistrates adjourned the case for a probation report and transferred the matter to Sheffield Magistrates’ Court for sentencing tomorrow, on March 7.

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