Leeds primary school caretaker thwarted burglar in £1,900 raid

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A CARETAKER thwarted a burglar who had been working at a Leeds school site during renovation works when he stole tools worth £1,900.

Leeds Crown Court heard Lee O’Hara, 42, was one of three groundsmen subcontracted by the company refurbishing Primrose Hill Primary School in Pudsey last summer.

Prosecutor, Louise Pryke, said at around 8.30pm on August 27, O’Hara broke into a portable building and stole a wall chaser tool, a chop saw and a gallon of fuel.

Miss Pryke said: “He was seen by a caretaker who stopped him and confronted him.” Miss Pryke said O’Hara claimed they were his tools, but was identified when he returned to work the next day.

Mitigating, Kathryn Stuckey, said: “I don’t believe he got away with any of the items. For some reason he returned to the scene to get his mobile phone and medication and at that point the caretaker detained him until police arrived.”

Miss Stuckey said O’Hara committed the burglary while involved in drug use but is now drug free. O’Hara, of no fixed abode, was jailed for 16 months at Bradford Crown Court last October for a previous burglary.

Judge Christopher Batty added four weeks to O’Hara’s current prison sentence after he admitted the August 2015 burglary.