Man who stole PC’s watch is sent to prison
AMAN has been jailed after stealing a policeman’s watch and carrying a blade concealed in a lighter.
Julian Peel, 34, swiped the watch which had fallen off the wrist of PC Kevin Errington while he was arresting another man, Macclesfield Magistrates heard.
When police caught the defendant the next day, he was found carrying a lighter with a button which flipped out a twoinch blade.
The defendant, of Newton Street, Macclesfield, said he was drunk when he took the watch and that he hadn’t realised his novelty lighter was a weapon, but pleaded guilty to carrying the blade and stealing the watch.
Peel admitted theft and possessing a blade in a public place.
He was jailed as a result of breaking the conditions of a suspended prison sentence imposed earlier this year.
Prosecuting, Debbie Byrne, said: “PC Errington was on Roe Street in relation to a wanted man who was standing with the defendant.
“The defendant made a comment about his watch and asked how much it cost.
“There was a struggle between PC Errington and the wanted man and the watch fell onto the pave- ment. He continued to restrain the man and couldn’t see the watch on the ground.
“Another officer arrived to assist and the defendant asked to leave.
“PC Errington watched CCTV which showed the watch was picked up by the defendant.
“He was seen on Samuel Street and found to have a knife disguised as a lighter, with a button used to flick the knife into a locked position.
“He said he couldn’t remember much about taking the watch but admitted stealing it and threw it into a bush because he didn’t want it.”
Defending, Lesley Herman, reminded magistrates Peel had entered prompt guilty pleas.
She said: “It was opportunistic. The watch fell off and he took it, he was very drunk.
“He said the lighter was a novelty item, his daughter bought it for him for father’s day.
“It’s small and happens to have a little blade, but because it’s lockable it makes it a weapon and he didn’t realise this.
“He’s working full time and living with his mum, so things have been looking better for him.”
Magistrates imposed the eight-week prison sentence which was suspended in February and gave him an additional four weeks in jail, £80 victim surcharge, £180 court charges and £30 compensation for the watch.
●● Macclesfield born Garry Wykes receives the Freedom of the City of London