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Man avoids jail for attempted £10k metal raid
11:00am Wednesday 23rd October 2013 in News
A MAN who was attacked by a police dog after a failed attempt to steal thousands of pounds worth of steel has avoided jail.
Andrew Fitzsimons, left, of St James Cottages, Grove, was convicted of one count of burglary at Field Barn Farm, near Abingdon, on May 14 last year.
A jury found the 43-year-old man guilty of trying to steal between £10,000 and £15,000 of stainless steel from Caribbean Cookers, together with at least one other person.
Fitzsimons, left, who continues to deny the offence, was bitten by a police dog after he was found hiding in a bush early in the morning near the scene of the burglary.
He told the jury at Oxford Crown Court he had only been at the site because he owned property there and had seen lights as he drove home.
Fitzsimons claimed he then ran away when men with metal poles approached him, and hid until the police dog found him.
Yesterday Deborah Champion, defending, said her client was “carrying the can” for a crime carried out by at least one other person.
Recorder Andrew Burrows said to Fitzsimons: “It is a worrying feature that you have shown no remorse and continue to hold to the story that the jury rejected.”
He sentenced him to 18 weeks imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, with a supervision requirement and a curfew for 24 weeks.