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Last Updated: Monday, 1 September, 2003, 17:15 GMT 18:15 UK
Addict jailed for 'outrageous' crimes
A Luton heroin addict who preyed on woman to fuel his habit has been jailed for more than six years for his "outrageous" crimes.

John Langley also badly injured an officer with his car when he became trapped in a car park by police.

Pc Lorraine Jamieson has been off work for three months.

Langley, 23 of no fixed address, who already had convictions mainly for drug-related crime, pleaded guilty to robbery, two thefts and a burglary.

He also admitted assaulting Pc Jamieson, dangerous driving and criminal damage.

Jeremy Taylor, prosecuting, told Luton Crown Court on Monday that on consecutive days in March he stole handbags from two women - one at a garage in Luton, another at a supermarket car park in Hitchin.

When he is not on drugs he is responsible, articulate and, dare I say it, pleasant. But he is not like that when he is on drugs
Robert English, defending
A week later he smashed the window of a car parked at a crematorium in Luton while the owner was visiting her daughter's grave.

The following day he burgled a petrol station in Lower Luton Road, taking property worth about 250.

On 6 April police were alerted about two men acting suspiciously in a car parked in a Luton car park.

A patrol car was parked across the entrance. One officer managed to open the passenger door when the car began reversing.

He was dragged backwards and the door caught Pc Jamieson, knocking her to the ground.

As he fled Langley damaged several cars, and then rammed a police car out of the way.

His vehicle was later found abandoned and Langley was later arrested.

Robert English, defending, said Langley had been addicted to crack cocaine and heroin since he was about 16.

"When he is not on drugs he is responsible, articulate and, dare I say it, pleasant. But he is not like that when he is on drugs.

'Outrageous behaviour'

"He is genuinely contrite and can see what a disaster his behaviour is for other people and himself."

Judge Terence Maher, jailing him for six years and nine months, said: "The sentence is meant to be severe and it is thoroughly merited for this outrageous behaviour."

He asked for 19 other offences of dishonesty to be taken into consideration including a robbery and other handbag thefts.

Langley was sentenced to three years and nine months for robbery and theft and three years to run consecutively for dangerous driving and assault.

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