Monday 18 June 2018
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Butt links burglar to break-in

Saturday 13 January 2018

Butt links burglar to break-in

A discarded cigarette butt and a receipt found at the site of a break-in at a home in St Helier has resulted in a 34-year-old mum being sent to prison for 21 months.

In August last year, a cleaner called the Police after noticing the property where she worked had been broken into. The family who live in the building were off island at the time. Almost a dozen items totalling more than £5,000, including cash, a laptop, and a television, had been stolen.

When Police inspected the scene, they noticed two bags in the rear garden that had been stuffed with items taken from the property but had not yet been ‘collected’. Inside one of the bags, they also found a community savings reciept, which led them to the accused: Lisa Michelle Vieira de Sousa. Many of the items reported missing were found in her flat.

Another piece of evidence that helped secure her conviction was a discarded cigarette butt. While de Sousa was being questioned, it was noticed that she was a smoker, and that she smoked Pall Mall – police had found a butt of the same brand in one of the bedrooms.

Pall Mall

Pictured: A Pall Mall cigarette butt found at the scene of the crime helped to identify De Sousa.

DNA tests later linked de Sousa to the discarded butt. She then admitted to the break-in claiming she was drunk at the time, and that she’d had a male accomplice who she refused to name.

The prosecution called for a two-year sentence, but her defence team argued that was too long. The Bailiff, Sir William Bailhache, and the jurats agreed and sentenced her to 21 months at La Moye.

He also had words of advice for de Sousa, saying: “You are still only 34. There is time to turn your life around. But you will have to tackle your substance abuse”

 

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