A child’s camera containing years of photos and videos that had not been backed up was one of the items taken in a burglary at a St Albans family’s home.
They were taken by drug addict Deon Germain who got into the house in Liverpool Road by smashing a window with a rock.
Germain, 54, from Luton was jailed for four years on Friday when he appeared at St Albans Crown Court via a video link from Bedford prison.
He had 45 convictions for 81 offences, including over ten burglaries of people’s homes.
Prosecutor Tara McCarthy said his latest break-in happened at around 8.45 in the morning on April 10 this year when the family who lived there were away on holiday.
Germain took mobile phones, cameras, a university cricket jumper and a Sidewalk holdall.
The next day he tried to sell the mobile phone at Cash Converters in Luton.
CCTV evidence tracked Germain’s movements from Liverpool Road to the station, showing him carrying the holdall.
Germain, of Eaton Green Road, Luton, pleaded guilty to burglary and attempting to convert criminal property.
Defending, David Healey said Germain had indicated a guilty plea at the earliest stage – at the magistrates’ court.
He said: “He has been involved in offending for a long time.
“Initially he was addicted to Class B and then Class A drugs. This has affected his mental health.
“The majority of his problems have been caused by a long-standing use of drugs.”
Whilst serving earlier prison sentences, he said Germain had obtained an A level in English Language, and AS level in history and a City and Guilds Qualification in Maths.
Jailing him, Judge Michael Kay QC said: “One of the cameras stolen was a child’s that contained photos and videos taken over a number of years. They were not backed up, and lost.
“For you it was another routine burglary, but for the people who live in the property it was a disaster.
“I have read the victim impact statement, which is a cry from the heart of an ordinary member of the public. She (the householder) said: ‘It is our family home – our family should feel safe, secure and at ease. These brazen and despicable actions have shattered our family’s feelings of safety at home.'”
Jailing Germain, Judge Kay said the public needed protection.