Sat, 15 Dec 2018
A HUNGERFORD man repaid a homeless friend’s kindness by sneaking into her hostel room and stealing from her.
The victim returned to her room to find her bank card and other property missing.
In the dock at Reading Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, December 6, was 25-year-old Alex Richard Stalker, of North View Heights.
Clare Barclay, prosecuting, said Mr Stalker had been a friend of his victim, Natalie Bradley, who was staying at the Two Saints hostel in Newbury.
She explained that, during a time when he too had been homeless, he had been allowed to stay overnight under the hostel’s ‘wayfarer’ scheme.
However, she added: “There was some incident at the hostel involving alcohol and as a result he was banned from the premises.”
It was then that “both of them agreed to remove a restraint bar from her room window to allow him to get in and out”.
She added: “On the day in question she had left her room locked and, when she returned, found her property was missing, including a bag containing a NatWest bank card.”
The court heard that Mr Stalker was caught on CCTV camera making off with his haul.
Ms Barclay said: “Police located him at his mother’s address, where he told officers his actions had been influenced by alcohol.”
Mr Stalker admitted stealing a CEX card, a bank card, a coat and a bag, all belonging to Ms Bradley, on November 18.
He also had previous convictions for being drunk and disorderly and for theft, magistrates were told.
Shehneela Ahmed, defending, said her client had been drinking when he went to Ms Bradley’s room “in order to get some of his own property”.
She added: “Out of sheer stupidity he took some of her property, too. He never intended to use the bank card.”
Ms Ahmed said Mr Stalker, a landscape gardener, was now living with his mother and was in regular employment.
Magistrates fined Mr Stalker £280 with £85 costs plus a statutory victim services surcharge of £30.