Victims fight back against would-be thief in the night

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A homeowner drove after a chancer who had gained entry to her car and raised the alarm before he could steal from her neighbours.

Drunken Robert Robertson (43) was caught in the act and sent “staggering” into the night by the alert residents.

Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, Roberston had pled guilty to three charges of intent to steal in Larbert last year – one in McCowan Crescent on December 8 and two in Cambridge Crescent on November 13.

Craig Wainwright, procurator fiscal depute, said: “It was 4.30am and the homeowner was woken up by the sound of a car door closing. Getting out of bed she looked out and saw the internal light of her Land Rover Discovery was on and saw the accused staggering away from her home.

“Her private CCTV system showed the accused had been within her motor vehicle for a brief period of time. She then got into her vehicle and followed the accused. She found him in a Range Rover and, sounding her horn, she alerted the homeowner, who came out and challenged the accused.”

Robertson staggered off and police were called.

He was soon back up to his old tricks again, however.

“It was 3am and the homeowner was alerted by the sound of stones crunching outside his property. He looked outside the window and saw his van was lying open and unsecured. He went outside and the accused was seen in the vicinity of the property.

“He was challenged and said ‘sorry mate, I’m off’ and subsequently made off.”

Defence solicitor Michael Lowrie said: “These offences were drink related. He hasn’t got any recollection of any of the offences.”

Sheriff Derek Livingston placed Robertson on a supervised community payback order for two years with the condition he complete 120 hours unpaid work within six months. A review was called for on June 1 and Robertson, Flat 7-2 Paton Drive, Larbert, was warned prison awaited him if he had not completed at least 60 hours by then.