Serial criminal who abused drugs from age of nine tells court ‘I need to change my life’

A serial criminal who started abusing drugs when he was just nine told a court "I need to change my life" when he appeared for his 190th offence.

Monday, 8th March 2021, 6:05 pm
Christopher Rutherford.

Christopher Rutherford was caught with two passports, a birth certificate, foreign currency and a coin collection just one day after they had been stolen during a break-in in Gosforth, Newcastle, last September.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 38-year-old had tried to hide behind a kitchen cupboard when police arrived at the address he was staying at in South Shields and found the stolen property.

Rutherford, of Hazlitt Avenue, South Shields, admitted handling stolen goods.

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The court heard he has 189 previous convictions, which includes offences of burglary and dishonesty.

Tony Hawks, defending told the court: "He is a man who was taken into care at aged 10, started abusing drugs at the age of nine and has only ever had one job.

"He is someone who is adrift in society.

"He is committed to trying to do something about it."

Rutherford, who appeared at the hearing via video link to prison, then addressed the court himself and said; "I need to change my life, I need to, Iknow that."

The court heard Rutherford has been in custody since he committed the offence.

Mr Recorder Toby Hedworth QC told Rutherford he had taken into consideration the amount of time Rutherford had spent behind bars on remand and told him: "Having something hanging over you as a deterrent to carrying out this kind of behaviour would probably be of advantage to society."

The judge sentenced Rutherford to 10 months imprisonment, suspended for two years.