Thief jailed for Glenrothes robberies

Martin Whyte (22) jailed for Glenrothes robberies
Martin Whyte (22) jailed for Glenrothes robberies

A thief stole a golf buggy which had been bought by a disabled Glenrothes man so he could continue to play golf.

The victim had recently had his leg amputated and bought the £2200 buggy to help get around the course.

He then broke into a family home, before stealing their car and visiting a McDonald’s drive-through.

Martin Whyte (22) admitted a string of offences when he appeared at Dunfermline Sheriff Court this week.

On July 2 or 3 in the town’s Duart Place, he forced open a locked garage owned by Joseph Allan and stole the golf buggy.

Meanwhile, his crime spree continued on July 4 when he broke into a house in Balfour Gardens and stole £1000 worth of computer equipment, a handbag and the family car, all while on bail.

The court was told that at 7pm on July 2 Mr Allan and his wife went out to a social event.

At around 11am the next morning he went to his garage and found the door was now not locked, with the buggy missing.

Police were called and the buggy was later found in bushes after a search of the surrounding area.

Whyte’s DNA was found on the buggy, and the court was told he had been hoping to find electrical items to sell on but abandoned the buggy in bushes after taking it for a drive.

The next day Whyte broke into a house as a couple and their three children were sleeping. He stole electronic goods as well as the family car.

He also took the children’s PlayStation 4 and Xbox consoles, along with other items.

The break-in was only discovered after the owner noticed her Ford Fiesta was missing from the driveway. She then noticed marks on the back door which suggested it had been forced upon.

Police investigating the theft studied CCTV images and saw the car being stolen from the house at around 12.50am. At 2.15am, images showed the car at the McDonald’s drive-through take-away in Kirkcaldy.

Officers were on the trail of Whyte and obtained a warrant to search his sister’s home where he was staying. The key to the car was found in the living room and the vehicle was parked nearby. The other items stolen were not recovered.

Sheriff Charles Macnair told Whyte: “You have a very bad record of similar offences of dishonesty.

“You broke into a property occupied by a family, including children. Breaking into an occupied property has a significant impact on the victims well beyond the theft of their belongings.

“The invasion of property can have a devastating effect on householders and they are entitled to see that the court sentences accordingly.”

Whyte, a prisoner at Perth, has been jailed for more than two years after admitting the break-ins. was jailed for 19 months and two weeks for the Balfour Gardens break-in and a further 206 days for the break-in and theft of the golf buggy, making a total of just over 26 months.