Charity shop arson attack

Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court
Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court

A man with learning difficulties had been “plied” with alcohol before setting fire to a charity shop’s door and a bin, a court heard.

Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court heard Peter Brompton, 33, was captured on CCTV on Sunday starting the fires in Leigh.

Joseph O’Connor, prosecuting, said: “CCTV shows the defendant approach a bin and set fire to the bin.

“He takes an item out of another bin and goes towards the letter box of a charity shop. He puts the items in the letter box and sets fire to those items.”

The fires caused damage to a door worth £500 at the Debra charity shop, on Bradshawgate, and a bin worth £100 owned by Wigan Council.

Bob Toppin, defending, told magistrates that Brompton had learning difficulties and had been out drinking.

He said: “He had been out drinking with friends. They had plied him with alcohol.”

Brompton, of Ludlow Drive, Higher Folds, pleaded guilty to damaging the door and bin by committing arson.

He also pleaded guilty to possession of cannabis on Saturday December 17 and failing to attend court.

The court was told police were called in December when Brompton was seen lighting a fire near Leigh bus station.

Police searched him and found a snap bag containing cannabis in his pocket.

Mr O’Connor said police could not find the items that had been burnt, but Brompton said in interview that he liked starting fires when he had been drinking.

Mr Toppin said he had not attended court in relation to the cannabis charge because he had got the dates mixed up.

Brompton has two previous convictions for arson dating back to 2010 and 2012, the court heard.

Magistrates adjourned the hearing so that a report could be prepared ahead of sentencing.

Brompton will return to the court on Tuesday May 30.

He was remanded on bail until the next appearance, with a condition of residence at his address on Ludlow Drive and a curfew between 8pm and 8am.