A teenager who was carrying out unpaid work at Paulerspury parish church when he wandered off to burgle a nearby house, has been sentenced to 12 months’ detention.
Joseph Marodza was sent to the The Church of St James the Great as part of a community order imposed on him for handling stolen goods. But he walked out after starting work on November 26 last year and walked into a property in High Street where he stole a packet of rolling tobacco and some cigarette papers.
Marodza, aged 19, of Forest Road, Northampton, admitted burglary at Northampton Crown Court, and was sentenced to 12 months in a young offenders’ institute. He was previously jailed for 12 weeks for breaching his community order.
The court heard Marodza had four previous burglary convictions, the first of which was carried out when he was 15, and one conviction for robbery.
Jenna Allen, prosecuting, said: “At about 10am the owner left the house. He was gone no more than five minutes.
“When he returned, he made his way into the kitchen and turned around to see this defendant tip-toeing towards the front door. He shouted at him and the defendant started running away.”
The victim caught up with Mardoza at the church and detained him until police arrived.
Sentencing, Judge Lynn Tayton said: “I accept this was committed on impulse, but there are aggravating features. You have previous convictions and a history of failing to comply with orders.”
James McLernon, mitigating, said: “He has genuine remorse. It was a purely opportunistic crime.”