Man’s ‘mean’ theft from his brother

Preston Crown Court
Preston Crown Court
  • Stole property from his brother, who has learning difficulties
  • The victim lives independently, but has carers
  • Demanded money from his brother, and stole a phone and television
  • Given six months in prison, suspended for two years, with 18 months’ supervision and 200 hours’ unpaid work

A man admitted the “mean” offence of stealing from his brother, who has learning difficulties.

Michael Barry and his then girlfriend stole property from his sibling’s Blackpool home.

He really hopes his brother is able to move on from these difficult set of circumstances.

Barry demanded money from his brother, and stole a phone and television when he didn’t receive any.

He was given a suspended prison sentence by a judge at Preston Crown Court.

The 23-year-old, of Station Road, South Shore, pleaded guilty to theft.

He was given six months in prison, suspended for two years, with 18 months’ supervision and 200 hours’ unpaid work.

He was also told to pay £500 compensation.

His ex-girlfriend, Letitia Lingard-Carthy, 18, of Foxdale Avenue, Layton, was ordered to do a 100 hours’ unpaid work. She had also admitted theft.

The victim lives independently, but has carers, the court was told.

Rachel Woods, prosecuting, said he was at home in June last year when the two defendants walked in.

Barry asked him for money. His brother said he didn’t have any. It was quite apparent the defendant was looking for money or property he could take, she said.

She added: “He returned to the living room and asked his brother if he could use his laptop. He was told ‘no’.

“He then asked if he could have the flatscreen TV in a utility room because he didn’t have one.”

After that, Barry found a safe where his brother’s money was kept.

He asked for the combination, but the victim said he didn’t have it and it was his carers who had the number. The flatscreen TV was taken, as well as a phone.

The teenage girl carried the TV from the home, on Barry’s instruction.

She had no previous convictions.

Lucy Wright, defending Barry, said it was accepted it had been a particularly mean offence. He knew the difficulties his brother, who is in his is 30s, suffered from.

She said: “He feels a great deal of remorse.

“He accepts his behaviour was completely unacceptable.

“He really hopes his brother is able to move on from these difficult set of circumstances.

“He wishes he had never involved himself.”

Since then, Barry had sought to turn his life around, the court was told.

At the time of the offence he was ‘broke’ and without a stable address.

“He is now a changed man. He has stable accommodation and a stable relationship with a girlfriend. He has two jobs and is earning around £300 a week”, added Miss Wright.

“He has given up drink completely and reduced his cannabis use. He realises the error of his ways. He very much wants a final opportunity to make amends for his wrongs”.

Peter Horgan, defending Lingard-Carthy, said she had turned 18 just days ago and was terrified of the consequences of her court appearance. She is no longer in a relationship with Barry.

He said: “This offence is a matter which she has significant regret for. There is genuine remorse.

“She is only in court because of her relationship with him. If court proceedings were to put the fear of God into a defendant, this is one of those where it has had an active effect.

“She is more than willing to repay her debt to society”.

The judge in the case, Recorder John Corless, said it had been a “mean” offence.