Burglary victim speaks out

But she is prepared to give culprits a last chance.

But, despite the financial and emotional impact, as well as losing months of work saved on memory sticks, Dolphins Nursery owner Jayne Morrissey said it is ‘business as usual’.

She said: “The burglary did add to the stress and it has been a difficult year for us.

“All that work has gone and we never got the digital camera back.

“We lost a day of work because of the burglary, which disrupted the families and children. The impact burglaries have on the victim is more than just financial.”

Hundreds of pounds worth of damage was caused and various items stolen when the building, in North Street, was broken into in June.

Some of the property was recovered, but two memory sticks with coursework and nursery prospectuses on them were never found – and Jayne had to start from scratch.

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Michael Taylor, 19, and a 17-year-old boy have been convicted for the burglary.

Taylor was jailed for 16 months. Exeter Crown Court was told Taylor, a drug addict, did not go upstairs to the living quarters.

Jane said: “I work 10 hours a day with the children. I find it hard to believe someone could argue it’s better to steal from a commercial dwelling than a house. This is my house, even though it’s a business.”

The youth who took part in the burglary, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was referred to Exeter Youth Offending Team. He is due to re-paint the nursery door as part of restorative justice.

Jayne said: “I wanted to offer him the chance to make it up. It’s up to him what he takes from it – if it’s to appease or to have a positive affect on his life. If he’s genuine, then it can only be a good thing.

“I feel quite sad about both of them.

“They’re young and I hope they can realise the damage they’ve done and turn their lives around.”

Arresting officer Pc Matt Sinker said he was pleased with culprits’ convictions and it showed how the neighbourhood team and CID worked together to tackle burglaries in the area.