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Prolific thief targeted Wisbech hospital staff

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A thief who targeted a hospital on multiple occasions, stealing from staff trying to deal with the pandemic, has been jailed for more than nine years.

Michael Bourn, 27, was first spotted on CCTV at North Cambs Hospital in Wisbech on May 28 last year. A tradesman was doing some work on the roof when he returned to his van and noticed power tools worth about £900 were missing. The CCTV footage showed a clear image of the suspect’s face and officers were able to identify Bourn.

MIchael Bourn. (55428645)
MIchael Bourn. (55428645)

Just a week later, Bourn returned to the hospital, and this time stole a purse, phone and car keys from a worker who had left them in an area not usually accessed by the public. After noticing her keys were missing, she went outside to check on her car and noticed it was gone. Once again, CCTV caught Bourn in the act.

Bourn visited the hospital twice more in the days that followed, taking a dongle and some cash. On one occasion, a night shift worker tending to an elderly patient noticed Bourn removing the window to one of the offices in an attempt to get in. She disturbed him and he ran away but the window had been completely removed. On both occasions, CCTV was recovered.

Bourn was also sentenced for engaging in sexual communication with a child, relating to him sending explicit pictures and having a sexual conversation via social media with someone he believed to be a 14-year-old girl, and a robbery, relating to a handbag snatch on 22 June last year.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary, attempted burglary and theft of a motor vehicle. He also admitted two counts of attempting to engage in sexual activity with a child, two counts of attempting to incite a girl aged 14 to engage in sexual activity and one count of robbery.

He was sentenced to a total of nine years and one month in prison at Peterborough Crown Court yesterday (9 March).

PC Peter Waite, who investigated, said: “Bourn brazenly and shamelessly targeted hospital workers and staff who were working tirelessly to care for sick people during the pandemic.

“He continued to go back again and again, stealing thousands of pounds worth of items.

“Together with the robbery and engaging in sexual communication with a child, Bourn’s actions were absolutely despicable and I am glad justice has been done.

“Bourn will spend a significant period behind bars to reflect on the hurt he has caused.”

Advice on how to best protect your home from burglars can be found on the force website: https://bit.ly/3tQd0wh

Concerned someone may have been convicted of a sex offence, and could be posing a risk to a child? Sarah’s Law lets you find out more.

Anyone who looks out for the welfare of a child can make an enquiry. This can include parents, carers, guardians, extended family, friends and neighbours. Find out more: https://bit.ly/3CDYziH

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