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Jesmond burglar who stole laptop containing uni work left student feeling ‘on edge’

David Cheetham targeted a house on Sanderson Road last March


A burglar has left a student “on edge” after stealing a laptop containing all of their university work.

David Cheetham had only been released from prison three months before breaking into the Jesmond home in March.

The 32-year-old stole a Macbook an Xbox and other sentimental items during the break-in, reports Chronicle Live.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the laptop was stolen from a student, who believed they lost all their uni work, potentially damaging their future career prospects and degree.

However, Northumbria Police tracked down Cheetham and fortunately recovered the laptop and other items.

Cheetham appeared in court via a link sent by HMP Durham to be sentenced to burglary, where he pleaded guilty to the charge.

Judge Stephen Earl said Cheetham burgled the home on Sanderson Road on March 8th, stealing high-value goods including a Macbook and Xbox.

The judge said: “Information led to the home of an individual and a phone was connected to the defendant. The defendant was arrested a property searched and some items were seized.”

The court heard how the victim of the laptop theft felt “on edge” and expressed feeling “stress and anxiety” believing they would lose their university work.

The court was told Cheetham had 40 previous convictions for 112 offences, 38 of which were theft-related. In September 2021, he had been jailed for two burglary convictions.

Glenn Gatland, defending Cheetham in court said that since being in prison, Cheetham has become a mentor and was “extremely hard-working” inside and considered a valued prisoner. He said: “He behaves very well in prison and is trusted. He does have a problem with cocaine and recognises his difficulties in relation to taking cocaine.”

Mr Gatland added: “He has expressed the view that having now been given a trusted role in prison, he is very keen, once released, to be able to himself seek help.”

Judge Earl sentenced Cheetham to three years.