Second of duo jailed over $34K tool theft

Jay Delvin Smith (31) joined his mate 32-year-old Brett Leon Mann in prison after he was...
Jay Delvin Smith (31) joined his mate 32-year-old Brett Leon Mann in prison after he was sentenced in the Dunedin District Court this week on charges involving thefts, driving and firearms offences. PHOTO: ODT FILES.
The second of a duo who plagued Dunedin tradies by stealing $34,000 of tools has been jailed for more than two years.

Jay Delvin Smith (31) joined his mate 32-year-old Brett Leon Mann in prison after he was sentenced in the Dunedin District Court this week on a vast range of charges involving thefts and driving and firearms offences.

Smith was locked up for 27 months, while Mann - a deportee from Australia - is serving a 38-month stint imposed last week.

In September last year, police received reports of 28 builders' vehicles having been broken into and tools taken in the space of a week.

Seven of those crimes were attributed to Smith and his co-defendant.

Police executed search warrants at houses linked to Smith and found nail guns, drill sets and other paraphernalia but much of the stolen haul was gone.

Officers later discovered Mann had been advertising some of the stolen items through his partner's Facebook page.

Smith, unlike his friend, spent more time on bail.

Strict conditions on his liberty, however, did little to stem the steady flow of offending.

On New Year's Eve at 2pm, Smith was in the passenger seat of a car parked in South Dunedin.

He told his associate he wanted to drive.

Immediately Smith drove the Nissan over car-park guttering, a garden and footpath to get into Kensington Rd.

He shot through a red light, heading towards Caversham, reaching speeds of 130kmh.

On State Highway 1, Smith was captured by a speed camera at 150kmh before he turned off at Green Island.

And it continued.

Smith cut corners, skidded on to footpaths and eventually slammed the car into a lighting pole, causing $8500 of damage.

He blew a reading of 815mcg - more than three times the legal limit - and told police he could not remember what had happened.

Bailed again, police went looking for Smith on May 11 in Mosgiel.

While he slipped away, they found a Remington pump-action shotgun and a black Ranger rife under his bed rolled up in a carpet.

Also at the property were 50 rounds of ammunition.

"It is alarming and frightening that a man with your background ... should have had those firearms stored under his bed," Judge Kevin Phillips said.

Smith had suggested Mann was the leader when it came to their joint offending but the judge was sceptical.

"It's very hard to work out who did what," he said, but noted the man's lengthy criminal history.

As well as the prison term, Smith was ordered to pay reparation of $15,224 and was disqualified from driving for 12 months.

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