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Ipswich teenager handed referral order extension after he admitted string of offences




An Ipswich teenager who confessed to almost 30 crimes including arson and assaulting a police officer has been handed an extension to a rehabilitation order.

The 15 year old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was initially charged with four offences - three of burglary and one of arson.

It came after a bottle of vodka was stolen from Martlesham Leisure Club, where £1,600 worth of damage was also done to a window, on February 28.

Suffolk Magistrates' Court. Picture by Mark Westley.
Suffolk Magistrates' Court. Picture by Mark Westley.

Cough medicine was also stolen from Tesco in Kesgrave on March 10 and cash was taken from a till at Costa Coffee in Martlesham.

The arson charge was in relation to an incident on October 20 during which damage was caused to a skip, which cost £380 to replace.

On June 10, the teenager was summonsed to appear before Suffolk Magistrates' Court, where he was charged with assaulting a police officer and causing damage to Martlesham Police Investigation Centre.

He opted to engage in the Operation Converter programme, which encourages offenders to admit their crimes, and confessed to a further 21 offences, including arson, criminal damage, theft, assault and attempted burglary, all of which took place between October 10 and February 28.

Appearing before magistrates on Thursday, the teenager was handed a three month extension to an existing referral order that was imposed in May.

Duncan Etchells from the Op Converter team said: "This individual caused widespread damage and distress to a number of people in the local community so to see him referred to the youth offending panel will hopefully help start to see a change in his behaviour. I hope that he will reflect on the upset he has caused and now start to turn his life around and start to realise a life of crime does not pay.”

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