Burglar used metal pole to smash into jewellers
PUBLISHED: 17:56 17 May 2019
A man who claimed he heard voices telling him to break into two Felixstowe jewellery shops on Christmas Day has been found guilty of burglary by reason of insanity.
Before Ipswich Crown Court was Reece Tye, 21, of Winalls Yard, Norwich, who had denied two offences of burglary, possession of an article with a blade or point in a public place and two offences of common assault on police officers.
On Friday, May 16 he was found guilty of the two burglaries by reason of insanity and guilty of the other three charges. All five verdicts were by a 10-2 majority.
Judge John Devaux adjourned sentence until the week commencing June 17 for a pre-sentence report.
Giving evidence during his trial Tye, who has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, said he had become anxious while watching his family eating a Christmas dinner at his mother's flat.
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"I felt quite worried about the treatment of turkeys because people eat them and they haven't done anything wrong," he told the court.
He said that after returning to the hotel in Felixstowe where he was staying, he had an argument with his girlfriend and had gone out into the town centre.
He said he felt as though he was being "guided by the wind" and heard voices which made him think he could save the lives of innocent animals by stealing something of value.
He used a metal pole to smash his way into Gorgeous Jewels and had then unsuccessfully tried to break into Boreham Christopher's next door.
When police arrived, he had come out of the shop with his hands by his head but claimed he was sprayed with an incapiciant spray and forcefully taken to the ground.
He denied punching a male police officer but accepted pinching a female officer's leg because he claimed he was unable to breathe and in pain from his arm being twisted behind him.
Simon Ward, prosecuting, said that police received reports of a man smashing windows at Gorgeous Jewels and Boreham Christopher, which are next door to each other in Hamilton Road in Felixstowe, with a metal bar at about 11pm on Christmas Day 2017.