Burglar jailed after leaving his own key at crime scene

Jordan Roche
Jordan Roche

A burglar is behind bars after leaving his own house key at the scene of a raid.

Jordan Roche and an accomplice broke into a pal's home, who they thought he would be out, and took an X-box and laptop.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the homeowner was disturbed by the intruders, gave chase and recognised Roche, who managed to get away.

A key found inside the burgled house at Parliament Street, Hebburn, matched the front door where Roche, 18, was living in the town.

Prosecutor Neil Pallister told the court: "The householder found a key on the living room floor, which had not been there before.

"He reported the matter and handed over the key to police officers.

"The defendant was arrested at his home address later the same day.

"The key which police officer recovered from the burgled house was found to be the key to the defendant's home address."

Roche, of no fixed address, who has previous convictions, had been given a community order for shoplifting three weeks before and was on a conditional discharge, admitted burglary.

Judge Edward Bindloss jailed Roche, who was due to be released today from an eight week sentence for public disorder, for 16 months.

The judge told Roche: "You left a key at the property, which turned out to be your own key to your own address.

"House burglaries are always serious offences because of the invasion of privacy, because of the upset."

The court heard Roche had been playing on the X-box he stole, with the householder, just two days before the raid in March.

Mr Pallister added: "The complainant recalls telling the defendant he and his wife were going to be going out on Friday March 11, so he thought it was going to be unoccupied."

The court heard when Roche carried out the raid at around teatime that day, the victim and his wife were both still at home.

The couple, who had been asleep, were disturbed by voices and the house holder followed the noise then saw Roche outside, who dropped a carrier bag containing the X-box.

The accomplice got away with a laptop. The court heard the computer was of "significant value" to the victim and contained irreplaceable photographs.

The victim told police: "I fell angry someone has come in my house and stole items I paid for with my own money."

Graeme Cook, defending, said Roche is at risk of becoming institutionalised and has lived a "chaotic" lifestyle, sofa surfing from one address to another with no real guidance.