Teenager jailed for smashing up £40,000 electricity meter in Moss Bank park and causing power cut during Mr Bloom show
A TEENAGER has been jailed for causing major disruption at Moss Bank Park after taking a sledgehammer to a power source.
Kieran Swanton, aged 19, cost Bolton Council more than £41,000 in repairs after he destroyed a meter cubicle at the park, off Moss Bank Way.
The vandalism took place on the same day BBC TV cameras were in the park filming Mr Bloom for a CBeebies show.
Rachel White, prosecuting at Bolton Crown Court, said police were approached on Saturday, July 20, and told that a man had been seen carrying a sledgehammer the park, but they were unable to find the man.
A council employee was contacted a short time later by a fairground worker who said the park had no electricity. Staff discovered meter cables had been “seriously damaged”.
Miss White said he went to the park then later returned with the weapon, which he had found.
She said: “He approached it and hit the brickwork around the front metal door. He was disturbed by visitors then hid in bushes. He went back and hit it again, causing damage to cables. A number of events that day were inconvenienced.”
A request for compensation of £41,489 to reimburse the council was requested at court yesterday.
Swanton, of Gargrave Avenue, Johnson Fold, had previous convictions including an arson when he set four bins on fire outside a McDonald’s outlet.
Alex Langhorn, defending, said Swanton had been excluded from school, but had achieved seven GCSEs and had qualifications in catering, mechanics, joining and roofing. He said Swanton was immature for his age.
Swanton admitted damaging the meter cable and was sentenced to 32 weeks in prison.
Recorder Ashley Murray said: “This was a mindless act of a person who has shown willingness to behave in an immature way before without regard to the impact of actions on you or others.
“You have previously committed a burglary and vandalism. You remain immature — this offence reveals that.
“I have to deal with you for damage which resulted considerable inconvenience to many innocent, law abiding people.”