Fingerprints found but teen didn't remember stealing school's computers

JAIL SUSPENDED: A teenager who broke into a house and a school and broke a window at another house said he did not remember committing break and enters.
JAIL SUSPENDED: A teenager who broke into a house and a school and broke a window at another house said he did not remember committing break and enters.

A teenager has avoided jail and was ordered to pay almost $5000 in compensation when he appeared in Orange Local Court on Monday.

Eric Middleton, of Cargo Road, Nashdale, was arrested on August 31 and told police, he didn’t remember breaking into a Cargo Road house or Nashdale Public School.

However, his fingerprints were found at both crime scenes and his DNA was tracked through blood left on a window he broke in Orange on July 22.

Middleton was fined $1500 and ordered to pay $50 in compensation after breaking into a house and stealing a $50 note at Cargo Road, Lidster, between 8am and 5pm on December 9, 2015.

He was also given a 12-month suspended jail sentence and was ordered to pay $3217.85 in compensation to the Department of Education after breaking into the Nashdale Public School office between 2.30pm on Sunday, January 3, 2016, and 9.30am the next day.

During the break-in Middleton ransacked the office and stole two computers valued at $467.17 each and a digital camera valued at $199.

He also took a key box, containing the master key, which forced the school to spend $2084.50 having the locks and keys replaced.

On July 22, Middleton punched and broke a window at a house in North Street, for which he was given a 12-month suspended jail sentence.

Middleton was represented in court by solicitor Mick Madden who said his client was trying to deal with family issues at the time of the offending.

“It is quite clear that he had an issue at that time with alcohol and cannabis,” Mr Madden said.

“In regard to these matters one would say he’s entered the big time.

“The one thing that has come from this is that before this happened he didn’t work, he didn’t keep his mind active and since these offences he has worked full-time with his father fencing.

“I believe that if he does stay at liberty that he stays working full-time with his father, the work is very important.”