Burglars jailed after Hitchin schools and a community centre targeted in break-in spate
PUBLISHED: 18:38 18 January 2016 | UPDATED: 18:41 18 January 2016
Two men have each been jailed for two years after admitting carrying out five burglaries in Hitchin – including at schools in the town and a community centre.
Anthony Desmidt, 21, and Craig Batten, 40, both pleaded guilty to a spate of break-ins between June 2 and 4 last year and were sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court on Thursday.
Desmidt, of Turnpike Lane in Ickleford, and Batten, of Willow Tree Way in Hitchin, were arrested almost immediately after the string of burglaries which included The Priory School in Bedford Road and Hitchin Boys’ School in Grammar School Walk.
Westmilll Community Centre in John Barker Place was also broken into, as was FCC Environmental in Bury Mead Road and a garage in Swinburne Avenue.
Temporary Det Sgt Kate Raine, from the North Herts Local Crime Unit, led the investigation. She said: “Both Desmidt and Batten caused a great deal of inconvenience last summer to local schools, businesses and garage owners.
“We will not put up with offenders such as this in North Herts and do everything possible to apprehend burglars as we have in this instance.
“We are pleased with the outcome of this sentencing and hope that the result sends a clear signal to anyone intent on committing such crimes, that we will not relent in catching offenders and will do all we can to continue to drive down burglary in North Herts.”