Handyman thefts lands man in jail

A Napier man said to be from a good background but with a propensity for fraud and theft has found that no matter how long it takes, if you do the crime, you do the time.

Appearing in Napier District Court last week, David Wayne Wratt, 40, was sentenced to 15 months' jail as Judge Tony Adeane finally brought the hammer down on Wratt for burglary and theft charges to which he pleaded guilty more than eight months ago.

The judge lamented that since the pleas were entered on February 1, there had been multiple adjournments involving a plea change, calls for psychiatric assessments, and a restorative justice meeting with a manager from Bunnings, the victim of crimes the judge reckoned were committed to sustain Wratt as a home-handyman.

On November 11, 2011, Wratt took a hammer from the store and before he appeared in court in relation to the offence, drove to the hardware chain's Napier premises and unlawfully entered the yard at the hardware chain's Napier store to steal timber.

At the time of the early morning raid, he had a 14-year-old boy with him and a radio scanner to monitor police activity, and a pair of bolt-cutters, although when they arrived as he attempted to make off with four planks he claimed he had been on his way home from a night's fishing.

Judge Adeane highlighted that Wratt had about 50 previous convictions for dishonesty and in 2010 was sent to jail for fraud.

"The day of reckoning has come," he said. "This was a blatant and dishonest commercial burglary by a profoundly dishonest man."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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