Wasted chance to work off debt

FAILING to carry out his community service caused magistrates to send a 20-year-old man to prison.

Harry Smith of Huntingtower Road had previously been given a 20-week custodial sentence suspended for 18 months, along with 40-hours unpaid work in the community.

After failing to attend meetings or carry out work, the number of hours was increased to 50 but Smith had only carried out seven when a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Chris Pye-Smith, defending, accepted the court had no choice but to send Smith to prison.

Mr Pye-Smith said: “He is realistic about his situation today.”

Chair of magistrates Ros Gulson activated the full 20-week sentence because the amount of work Smith had carried out was “negligible”.