‘Prolific’ Hailsham burglar caught stealing from Eastbourne home

A ‘prolific’ Hailsham burglar who was caught on camera stealing from an Eastbourne home has been jailed.

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 9:36 am
Updated Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 9:49 am
Michael Stonestreet was caught on CCTV - images from Sussex Police SUS-200909-094720001

Michael Stonestreet stole cash, tools, building materials and jewellery from houses in Eastbourne and Hailsham, police said.

The 32-year-old child carer was brought to justice with the help of CCTV and fingerprint evidence.

According to police, Stonestreet, of Butts Field, has an extensive history of burglary and theft offences.

Michael Stonestreet SUS-200909-092635001

Police say Stonestreet called at an address in Rosebury Avenue, Eastbourne, on November 12, 2019.

After receiving no answer, he proceeded to walk to the rear of the property – which was undergoing building work – and stole a roll of lead.

He returned a short time later, police said, and stole £100 cash from a jacket pocket belonging to one of the builders, before also taking a tile cutter and a nail gun.

All of this was captured on CCTV installed at the house, and Stonestreet was identified by local officers who have dealt with him before.

In a separate incident on September 26, 2019, Stonestreet forced entry into a house in The Holt, Hailsham, via a locked rear window.

From inside, police said he stole items including a gold chain, a gold ring, a bracelet, a BB gun, a knife with replica ivory handle and sheath, and around £7,000 in cash.

Forensics investigations were carried out at the scene, which resulted in Stonestreet’s fingerprints being discovered inside the window frame.

He was arrested and charged with two counts of burglary, and answered ‘no comment’ to all questions in police interview, according to Sussex Police.

Appearing before Lewes Crown Court on August 19, Stonestreet was sentenced to two years and eight months’ imprisonment.

Inspector Rachel Barrow said, “Michael Stonestreet is no stranger to us, having been convicted of a number of other theft and burglary offences in the past few years.

“He has made no attempt to improve his behaviour, which is reflected in this custodial sentence.

“Through forensics evidence and CCTV images which clearly identified him, we were able to bring him to justice for these two offences.

“While these appear to have been two opportunist incidents, I’d like to remind residents to be vigilant and report any suspicious behaviour to us.”

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