Community Craft & Creative Art Courses!8th September 2023
Heritage Open Day Back to Life Festival!8th September 2023
Scott Stelloo, 29, of Easedale Avenue, Bilton Grange, east Hull, admitted burglary.
A serial burglar who had been committing crime and taking drugs since the age of 15 broke into a flat by climbing through a window while the occupier was out at work.
Regular criminal Scott Stelloo was recognised by police from CCTV pictures of the break-in, but he desperately tried to talk his way out of trouble by pretending that the accomplice who was with him actually lived there and just wanted to collect some belongings.
He was quizzed about why an occupier would need to climb in through a window instead of using the door but his excuse for the accomplice not entering through the window himself was that he had a “bad knee” and could not do so, Hull Crown Court heard.
Stelloo, 29, of Easedale Avenue, Bilton Grange, east Hull, admitted burglary on March 22. He originally denied the offence but changed his plea on the day of a scheduled trial.
Michael Forrest, prosecuting, said that the occupier of a flat in Lambert Street, Hull, went to work at 12pm but returned to discover that it had been broken into. CCTV pictures showed that, at 5.30pm, Stelloo and an accomplice walked to the rear of the property.
Police identified Stelloo from the CCTV footage and he was arrested on April 6. He claimed during police interview that he had been “set up” and that his accomplice told him that it was his home and that he wanted to retrieve his items.
He named the accomplice to police and claimed that he had known him only for about a month. He admitted that it would be quite strange for a person who had lived there to get in through a window.
The accomplice supposedly had a “bad knee” so could not himself climb in and acted as the lookout for Stelloo.
The occupier of the flat later said: “This has left me feeling less safe in my own home.”
Stelloo had convictions for 71 previous offences, including 28 for theft and similar. He had convictions for four previous domestic burglaries.
Marc Luxford, mitigating, said that Stelloo had been quite open with police and had given the name of the other man. Police “chose not to act on that information” and the other man had not been arrested.
“The items may have been recoverable,” said Mr Luxford. Stelloo had suffered a difficult upbringing.
“He is easily led,” said Mr Luxford. “It appears to be the root of all of his offending.” Stelloo’s first conviction was for taking a vehicle without consent at the age of 15.
Drugs and alcohol had caused him problems during his life, but it was diazepam, Tramadol and cannabis and not Class A drugs. “It has led him to make stupid decisions since the age of 15,” said Mr Luxford.
Stelloo was on a drug-free wing in prison and had a job in catering in the prison. He had successfully completed an NVQ in catering.
“He has made stupid decisions but there are certainly some positives in his life,” said Mr Luxford. Stelloo had two daughters, aged eight and seven, and a son, aged five.
Recorder Taryn Turner told Stelloo: “You, together with an accomplice, made what was, on any view, a determined effort to break into the home address of the man while he was out at work.”
They were “hanging about waiting for the coast to be clear” so that he could go in through a window and help himself to items that the occupier had saved up to buy and could not easily be replaced.
Stelloo admitted that his excuse to the police “does not hold water” and he had eventually pleaded guilty. “You have a bad track record for criminal offending and, in particular, in respect of offences of dishonesty,” said Recorder Turner.
“You have had a difficult start but that does not excuse you, at 29, from offending like this.”
Stelloo was jailed for three years for the “third strike” burglary.