Drunken joke lands persistent offender in jail

PUBLISHED: 14:30 10 January 2008 | UPDATED: 12:45 06 May 2010

A PERSISTENT offender, who claimed that he took a teenager s scooter as part of a drunken joke, has been jailed. Jason Swaryczewski, aged 22, of Holyrood Crescent, St Albans, was given a seven-month sentence at St Albans Crown Court on Thursday after plea

A PERSISTENT offender, who claimed that he took a teenager's scooter as part of a drunken joke, has been jailed.

Jason Swaryczewski, aged 22, of Holyrood Crescent, St Albans, was given a seven-month sentence at St Albans Crown Court on Thursday after pleading guilty to theft. Swaryczewski was already serving a suspended prison sentence and had six previous convictions.

He and a 17-year-old youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, were charged with the robbery of the scooter. The 17-year-old pleaded guilty but Swaryczewski denied this and instead admitted theft.

Michael Greenslade QC, prosecuting, said the 16-year-old owner of the scooter was riding it in Marford Road, Wheathampstead on September 1 at around 10pm when he was flagged down by Swaryczewski and the 17-year-old.

The trio then went to the Memorial Hall where the victim thought a party was taking place but the 17-year-old defendant then grabbed the victim's helmet and said: "Roll me a spliff or I'll rip your lips off."

The victim tried to call the police but was threatened by the pair. He was then pushed to the ground and the two defendants rode off on his scooter.

Later that night, police officers saw the scooter being used by two men and recognised the 17-year-old defendant but he refused to stop and rode away so the police called as his house at 2.55am the next day and arrested both men.

Matthew Nash QC defending Swaryczewski said his client was very drunk that night and the bike was taken as a joke.

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