A DRUG-addicted burglar who preyed on pensioners to feed his habit was today behind bars.
Homeless John Cornmell, 45, was starting a seven-year sentence after targeting sheltered accommodation across Merseyside.
The career criminal, known as “Glosh”, pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary when he appeared in court this week.
And he admitted more than 30 others.
Said to be a polite and calm thief, the 45-year-old struck in Bootle, Netherton, Crosby, Dingle, Toxteth, Aigburth, Wavertree and at several addresses in Wirral.
He would trick his way inside blocks of flats and then prowl the corridors looking for an open or unlocked door.
Cornmell grabbed purses and handbags, emptying them of cash before slipping away.
Liverpool crown court heard he used the cash to pay for his heroin habit.
Cornmell committed the offences while on licence after being locked up for four-and-a-half years for a spate of burglaries
Police kept a close eye on him when he was first released but he soon went underground, getting in contact with his addict friends.
He resurfaced as a suspect following a series of thefts in May and June and another rash of similar crimes in September and October before he was locked up in November.
Det Con Rob Cartwright, of Merseyside police, said: “John Cornmell has been on our radar for many years.
“He is stuck in a cycle of committing offences, going to prison, getting out and committing offences again.
“His offences are all committed in the same way. He seeks out his victims – mostly elderly ladies, although some were men – and takes whatever cash he can find.
“He was very forensically aware and would actively shy away from confrontation or violence.
“We are putting plans in place so that next time he gets out of prison he can get help, get somewhere to live and hopefully stay off the drugs, which are the root of his problems.
“His sentence is a significant one. Six years for the burglaries and the final year he has to serve from his last sentence THE ECHO