Raider spared jail after bike theft from hotel

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A HOTEL thief was arrested after a chase by staff and police.

Karl Hogg was spotted stealing a mountain bike from a staff room of the Ramside Hall hotel, near Durham City, before fleeing in a van with two accomplices who have not been caught.

Durham Crown Court heard how a member of staff gave chase but stopped after Hogg got out of the van threatened him with some bolt croppers.

Victoria Lamballe, prosecuting, said police were called and spotted the van in nearby Low Pittington.

The van stopped at the junction of Pittington Lane and the A690 Sunderland to Durham road where it reversed into the police car before driving off again.

She said: “The van stopped again after a short distance, possibly due to a mechanical failure, and the occupants fled on foot. The defendant, who was the driver, was found hiding beside a wall.”

Hogg, 24, of Edward Street, Gilesgate, admitted burglary, driving while disqualified, and failing to provide a specimen of breath, all on October 2, last year.

Christopher Rose, defending, said: “This was an unpleasant offence, but Mr Hogg had no intention of using the bolt croppers as a weapon, he had them as a tool to steal things. He now has the offer of a job with a contractor.”

Hogg was given 26 weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months, 150 hours of community work, and a 12-month driving ban.