by Paul Hooper
Burglar Tom Dixon now knows one of the reasons smoking can damage your
He broke into a Broadstairs home and snatched £8,500 of jewels -
but couldn’t resist grabbing a packet of ciggies.
Then the 22-year-old raider got distracted as he ransacked the house in
Baird’s Hill and threw the packet away.
And that clue led to him being arrested and now behind bars!
Home owner Keith Moult returned to find 30 computer games, engagement rings, two mobile phones and a wallet missing - he noticed the discarded cigarette packet.
But prosecutor James Bilsland told Canterbury Crown Court that forensic experts matched fingerprints to the serial burglar.
Dixon, of Trove Court, Newcastle Hill, Ramsgate was jailed for 32
months after admitted two break-ins and asking for two more offences to
be considered, including a break-in at a nursing home.
Mr Bilsland said Dixon and pal Ashley Little, 18, of Margate Road,
Ramsgate also broke into a house in Smugglers Way in Birchington a few
They were spotted by neighbours who alerted police. Little was nabbed
keeping watch but Dixon fled, discarding all the jewellery he had
The prosecutor said most of the items were later recovered - but a
1986 medal from the Chelsea Flower Show was never found.
Judge Heather Norton told Dixon that he had ransacked the house before stealing items of “sentimental” value.
“That’s the real harm because burglary isn’t a crime against property but against people.”