Heartless burglar targeted cancer charity shop then stole Rolex watches from Leeds home in Christmas raid

A heartless burglar who broke into a cancer charity shop then targeted a family home over Christmas, taking £38,000 worth of watches, designer gear and cash.
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Crack addict Dale Bruce smashed his way into the shop in Morley overnight on December 6 last year, ransacking the premises. He then broke into a home on Middleton Road, also in Morley, sometime between Christmas and December 29, stealing a host of valuable items.

A career burglar with a "plethora" of break-ins to his name, he was jailed for three years at Leeds Crown Court.

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Prosecutor Carmel Pearson said staff were alerted to a break-in at the Cancer Research UK shop when they came to open up. The door was left open, a window was smashed, an untidy search had been carried out and a safe had been opened with £100 taken from inside. A fork had been used to open the safe that was found to contain Bruce's DNA.

However, the 32-year-old then broke into the home while the family were away weeks later. Again he ransacked the property, took three Rolex watches worth £24,000, a Hublot watch worth £4,000, around £3,500 in cash and three designer handbags worth over £4,000. He also took passports and bank cards, which he tried to use in a shop days later.

CCTV stills from that shop were recovered by police recognised Bruce trying to use the stolen card. None of the items have been recovered. Appearing in court on remand via video link from HMP Doncaster, he admitted both burglaries, while a second shop break-in in Morley from November was also taken into account.

Dale Bruce broke into shops and a home to feed his crack habit. (pics by WYP / National World)Dale Bruce broke into shops and a home to feed his crack habit. (pics by WYP / National World)
Dale Bruce broke into shops and a home to feed his crack habit. (pics by WYP / National World)
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Bruce, of no fixed address, has 25 previous convictions for 47 offences. Mitigating, Jordan Millican said: "Speaking frankly about his pattern of behaviour, he is someone who is addicted to this sort of behaviour because of his other addiction, that being crack cocaine. It has ruined his life. He welcomes a lengthy stretch in custody. There is remorse and accountability for his actions."

Judge Kay Rayfield told Bruce: "It was spate of offending over a couple of weeks. Inevitably this is going to be the longest sentence you have had."