Teenager jailed over burglary at Leeds community centre

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A TEENAGE burglar has been locked up for his role in a break-in at a community centre in Leeds.

Adam Dale was caught after his blood was found at the scene of the burglary at Cottingley Community Centre.

Leeds Crown Court heard the building is an important community facility which houses a church, meeting rooms, a homework club and offices.

Dale, 19, and other unknown accomplices removed a window to get into the building, on Cottingley Approach, on November 20 last year.

Cupboards were forced open in the vestry area and a safe was stolen. Five lap top computers, used by children at the homework club, were also stolen.

The safe was later found dumped nearby on Beechwood Avenue. The door had been ripped off and it was empty.

Christopher Jackson, prosecuting, said cash and items to the value of £2,726 was taken and £3,000 worth of damage was also caused to the building.

The court heard Dale and Ashton Myers, 22, carried out a burglary at Cottingley News in the early hours of February 3 this year.

The pair made a hole in the roof before climbing in to steal cigarettes and cash from the till.

Police were called and Dale and Myers gave themselves up before a police dog was released.

Dale, of Dulverton Place, Cottingley, pleaded guilty to two offences of burglary and Myers, of Wortley Towers, Wortley, pleaded guilty to one offence of burglary.

Dale was sent to a young offenders institution for 14 months and Myers received an eight month sentence.

Lawyers for both defendants said they had pleaded guilty at an early opportunity and had complied with the police investigation.

Referring to the community centre raid, Recorder Gurdial Singh, said: “It is quite clear that this is a community centre that provides a great deal of support to its local citizens.

“The last thing it needs are young men entering and helping themselves to hard earned property.”

Referring to the newsagents raid, he added: “The owner describes it as a local convenience store and it is one that richly deserves protection. The more these properties are burgled, the more they are unable to protect themselves.”

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