Leeds burglar who targeted student properties in Headingley caught after he was filmed walking down the street with stolen laptop

A career burglar has been sent back to prison after he broke into two student properties in Leeds and stole an Audi to fund his drug habit.

By Tony Gardner
Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 4:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 4:45 pm

Shane Armitage was identified as the suspect for one of the house break-ins after he was filmed walking off with a stolen laptop.

Armitage was handed a prison sentence at Leeds Crown Court despite his efforts to persuade a judge not to jail him so he could get help to break his addiction to heroin and crack cocaine.

Sue Evans, prosecuting, said Armitage targeted a house on Ash Gardens, Headingley, on July 21 last year.

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Shane Armitage was jailed for 32 months at Leeds Crown Court after pleading guilty to burgling two houses in Headingley and stealing an Audi.

He climbed onto a pallet to gain entry to the property through an upstairs window.

The woman who lived at the house was out at the time but returned home with a friend shortly after Armitage had carried out the burglary.

Ms Evans said the victim saw the defendant in the street carrying her laptop

The victim's friend used a mobile phone to record Armitage and the footage was later used to identify him as the burglar.

Armitage ran off with the laptop.

He carried out a second burglary on October 31 at a house on Derwentwater Grove.

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The house was unoccupied when Armitage smashed a back door window to get inside some time between 6.30pm and 8pm.

He stole a gold ring, airpods and keys to an Audi which was parked outside.

The vehicle was driven away but a police officer found the vehicle at 8.30pm that day.

Armitage was a passenger in the vehicle which had been driven by a woman.

Officers told Armitage to get out of the car.

He tried to escape and struggled with the officers.

A taser was used as he was detained.

The gold ring and the airpods were found in his jacket pocket.

Armitage, of Summerfield Drive, Stanningley, pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and theft of a vehicle.

He has 20 previous convictions for 41 offences and has served prison sentences in the past for domestic burglary.

The court heard Armitage is a 'third strike' burglar, making him eligible for a minimum three-year prison sentence

He appeared in court via a prison video link from HMP Leeds.

Armitage did not have legal representation at the hearing.

He told the court that he committed offences to fund his addiction to drugs,

Armitage said he had been a user of heroin and crack cocaine since he was 13 as result of a traumatic childhood.

He urged The Recorder of Leeds, Judge Guy Kearl QC, to consider imposing a community-based sentence so he could receive treatment to address his drug addiction.

Armitage said: "There is no form of rehabilitation in here (prison). That is the god's honest truth.

"I have tried all sorts of courses and it doesn't work.

"Can I have another chance? Because I will be sat in front of you again for doing the same crime.

"Please help me to sort my addiction out."

Judge Kearl told Armitage he was unable to impose anything other than immediate custody as a minimum sentence had to be imposed

He said: "There is no way around this. It is not unjust to impose such a sentence."

Armitage was jailed for 32 months after being given credit for entering guilty pleas at an early stage.

Judge Kearl added: "I wish to place on the court record that this is a man who has expressed a clear desire to address his addiction.

"I would like this to be brought to the attention of the probation service."