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Thieving rambler who stayed in empty caravans spared stay in prison

By Western Daily Press  |  Posted: February 27, 2013

The case was heard at Exeter Crown Court

The case was heard at Exeter Crown Court

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A thieving rambler who spent four months roaming the country staying in more than 80 empty caravans was yesterday spared jail.

Alan Campbell, 39, slept in other people’s vacant static caravans and helped himself to their food as he trekked for 100 miles. He eventually gave himself up after running out of places to stay – and being too cold to continue, Exeter Crown Court heard.

Campbell admitted two break-ins and asked for more than 80 at 16 separate camp sites to be taken into consideration. But he escaped with a 12-month suspended jail sentence – after telling the court he had finally found a permanent place to live.

Campbell started his coastal caravan ‘holiday’ in Weymouth, Dorset, in July 2012 after his release from prison for a previous theft. He hiked from campsite to campsite, bedding down in vacant vans and looting them for food and drink before moving on.

He finally handed himself to police in Kingsbridge, Devon, because of the cold weather.

Campbell has since been helped by a homeless charity and is now living on benefits in Exeter. Judge Phillip Wassall said he was willing to spare Campbell a further stint behind bars because he had made “positive efforts” to turn his life around.

UNWELCOME GUEST - WHERE CAMPBELL STAYED

West Hayes Caravan Park (Lyme Regis, Dorset); Rousdon Caravan Park (Lyme Regis); Castle Brake Caravan Park (Woodbury, Devon); Bagwell Farm (Weymouth, Dorset); Gorselands Caravan Park (Dorchester, Dorset); Freshwater Beach Holiday Park (Bridport, Dorset); Doghouse Farm (Bridport); Golden Cap Caravan Park (Seatown, Dorset); Portesham Dairy Farm (Portesham, Dorset); Smedmore Caravan Park (Kimmeridge, Dorset); Ladram Bay (Budleigh Salterton, Devon); Kingsdale Tail (Devon); Ashdown Caravan Park (Seaton, Devon); Salcolme Regis Caravan Park (Salcombe Regis, Devon); Manor Farm (Seaton, Devon); Webbers Farm Camping and Caravan Park (Exeter, Devon)

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