He walked into a Bridgetown court having no fixed place of abode, but Barry St Alban Sobers will have a place to call home for the next 28 days at least.
His time at HMP Dodds could be increased when he reappears before Magistrate Douglas Frederick on February 16 to be sentenced for 19 burglaries.
The 48-year-old, who admitted to being a user of crack cocaine, also pleaded guilty to damaging a motorcar belonging to Anthony Boyce sometime between November 12 and 13 last year and stealing a Swiss Army knife worth $120, a utility knife worth $23, an ash tray worth $50, a watch worth $450 and $50 in cash belonging to Boyce.
Between November 21 and 24 he also damaged Joyann Thomas-Nurse’s motorcar and the vehicle of Marjorie Brathwaite, as well as stealing $1 belonging to her.
Between December 12, 2016 and January 3 this year, Sobers said he stole $45 worth of items from Orin Boyce; $250 in items belonging to Grace Ann Olivierre; items totaling $20 belonging to Wayne Watson; $280 worth of articles belonging to Margaret Everett; articles worth $230 belonging to Kert Bushay; $750 worth in items belonging to Bryan Ifill; and $10 belonging to Alexis Austin. During that time he also damaged vehicles and stole items belonging to Thecla Worrell, Nazi Mehtar, David Cozier and Kevin Sealy.
Police prosecutor Rudy Pilgrim told the court that all the complainants had parked their vehicles in different areas, including their residences, and secured them.
“However, on their return they found the glass broken and the items missing. Reports were made and the accused [became] a suspect. In one of the matters he was caught red-handed and was chased, but he eluded the complainant,” Pilgrim revealed.
“He also has an unpaid fine and a warrant issued for his arrest, Sir.”
Sobers told the court he was unable to pay that fine since he lost his job after working for 90 days as a packer at Harris Paints.
“In that short period of time . . . I started using crack cocaine and that is what started the rampage,” he said.
Sobers said his troubles began in the United States.
He revealed that he had served time in prison there after an argument with the mother of his two children and her boyfriend led to him fracturing the man’s jaw and breaking his arm.
Sobers revealed that his ex and her boyfriend were alcoholics and the two were intoxicated when they went to his (Sobers’) home to collect their son. He said the boy did not want to leave with the two and the situation led to a scuffle and him assaulting the man and being charged.
Sobers was sentenced to two and a half years to five years in prison but was deported in September 2009 at the age of 41, after living in the US from the age of four.
“I had nobody here,” said the Barbadian-born Sobers who left his St Peter home for the United States to live with his mother. “It was hard . . . but I tried to make the best of it.”
“I know I will get some jail time but can I get some kind of help?” he asked the magistrate who was listening intently.
Asked to explain his crimes, Sobers replied: “At that point the cocaine had me, so . . . I really didn’t care at that point. I was homeless and that led to my using the cocaine.”
Magistrate Frederick is expected to hand down his sentence when Sobers returns to court next month.