May 18 2013 Latest news:
by Court Reporter
Sunday, August 5, 2012
A Stroud Green builder who claimed he was only looking for the loo when he was caught in a mobile phone shop during the London riots has been jailed for 10 months.
Kevin Walsh, 37, was among looters who targeted the O2 shop in Camden High Street, Camden Town, at the height of last summer’s violence on August 9.
The Beatrice Road resident - who was on police bail for drink driving at the time - was spotted on CCTV drunkenly crawling under the shutters of the store at about 2am, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.
Walsh had been found guilty of a single count of burglary after a trial, although he had not stolen any items from the shop.
Mitigating, Martin Goudie said Walsh acted on “impulse” and was drunk, having battled alcohol addiction for more than a decade.
“He was not part of a group as a result of text messages or Facebook and didn’t come into the area to take something.
“This is an individual who was under the influence of alcohol, something that has been a significant problem for him.
“He has done what he can to deal with that and has got on the road to recovery without waiting for the courts to intervene.
“He is qualified and skilled and someone who can go out and be of assistance in society.”
Judge Mr Recorder Peter Rouch said the offence was so serious the “only appropriate sentence is one of immediate custody”. He added: “You were caught inside the premises and were alert enough when stopped by the police to try and explain yourself by saying you entered the shop to try and use the lavatory.”