Pinxton lead thief faces imprisonment

JAIL could be looming for a Pinxton dad caught stripping lead from the roof of a derelict pub.

Robert Townsend was subject to a suspended prison sentence when he committed the offence on May 28. Chesterfield magistrates heard that a police helicopter detected movement on the roof of the George Inn, in Wharf Road, Pinxton, at 9.40pm.

“He was found on the roof by police. He got down and nearby was a large quantity of lead from the roof. In his pocket was a Stanley knife. He said he had removed the lead and was ‘banged to rights’. About £300 worth of lead was recovered,” said Helen Griffiths, prosecuting. “He said he knew the pub was going to be demolished and he didn’t think it would matter if he took some lead from it. He did it because he had lost his job and he had two children to feed. He was going to sell the lead.”

Townsend, 39, of Wharf Road, Pinxton, admitted theft and possessing a blade in public.

He had previous convictions for damage and possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

Magistrates committed him to be sentenced on August 16 at Nottingham Crown Court, where the suspended jail term was imposed. He was granted bail.