Published: 14:42, 16 April 2018
| Updated: 14:44, 16 April 2018
A 20-year-old burglar made it easy for neighbours to identify him after driving to the house in a car with his personalised number plate.
Hapless George Mee had been thwarted in the “opportunistic” break-in when householders in Deal stopped and photographed him.
The young man then fled empty-handed to where he had left his blue VW getaway vehicle with the number plate GM05MEE.
He was arrested later after police put the photo together with DVLA details of the vehicle.
Now, Mee, of Cromwell Park Place, Folkestone, has been ordered to undertake a course in bettering his “thinking skills” after admitting the burglary.
The judge heard how after the break-in Mee’s parents banned the jobless kitchen fitter from driving the vehicle for a while.
After hearing his parents had allowed him back behind the wheel, recorder Dexter Dias QC asked: “I trust the number plate has now been changed?”
Mee’s lawyer Caroline Moonan told the court, where Mee’s father was sitting in the public gallery, the number plate has now gone.
The judge quipped: “I thought they might!”
Prosecutor David Povall told Canterbury Crown Court how the victim, student Daniel Robinson had answered a knock on the door of his Ringwould home in May last year.
Mee told him he had the wrong address but Mr Robinson saw someone else’s legs poking out from a neighbour's bush.
He said: “Minutes later there was another knock at the front door and Mr Robinson found Mee standing with another man, who was holding a knife.
“Mr Robinson tried to shut the front door and there was a struggle and the student began scuffling with the knife man."
The prosecutor said Mr Robinson then began shouting to his neighbours in Front Street for help and the knifeman ran away.
Mee took the opportunity during the ruckus to go inside but left 10 seconds later empty-handed and was then “roughed up a bit” by neighbours who allowed him to leave after photographing him.
The burglar and the knifeman then got into the VW and left the area but not before the number plate was noted.
Mee would later claim he had been asked by a former school pal to drive to the house to collect a debt – but didn’t know the man was armed.
He was given an 18-month community order and ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work for the community.
A second man was arrested after the attack but freed without charge.
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