Hawick burglar jailed for breaking into neighbour’s home

Silverbuthall Road, Hawick.
Silverbuthall Road, Hawick.

A man has been jailed for 300 days at Jedburgh Sheriff Court for breaking into a neighbour’s house and stealing a mobile phone.

Martin Charlotte pleaded guilty to committing that offence when he lived in Silverbuthall Road, Hawick, on July 4.

Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser said: “They lived in the same close. The complainer went out for the evening and saw the accused, who lives downstairs, as he went out with his partner for the evening.

“When the complainer came home, he noticed that his mobile phone, worth £200, had gone.

“Later on, the accused was in a bookmaker’s in Hawick and got into conversation with an acquaintance about a mobile phone which had a distinctive gold colouring and said he had broken into a house and taken it.

“He wanted to sell the phone for money, but the acquaintance told him he should not have done this.”

The police later learned that Charlotte had the phone, and they traced him.

Mr Fraser said Charlotte told officers that he saw his neighbour leave with his partner and, after having a few drinks, decided to break into the house using a saw to force open the door.

The fiscal continued: “He told police when he woke up in the morning that he had regretted what he had done and said he used to be friendly with the householder.”

Charlotte, 36, now living in Dickson Street, Hawick, told them he had sold the phone for £20 but could not remember to whom.

Defence lawyer Ed Hulme said his client had alcohol problems at the time of the offence.

He added: “He used to be friends with the man and took the opportunity when he saw him leaving.

“He was fully co-operative with the police when traced.”

Charlotte was already in custody after being jailed for three months for a domestic bust-up with his partner on New Year’s Day.

Sheriff Peter Paterson told Charlotte he had a serious record for crimes of dishonesty.

He reduced his prison sentence from 450 days to 300 due to his guilty plea.