Goldilocks-style burglar fell asleep in victim's bed after stealing chicken and cider feast

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A burglar helped himself to food and drink during a house raid then got comfortable in the owner's bed and fell asleep.

Graham Edmond tucked into a cooked chicken, washed down with cans of cider from the fridge, after breaking into a flat to Boldon Lane in South Shields, through an open window, in April.

The 34-year-old burglar then got into bed, while still wearing his clothes and shoes, and was still there, sleeping, when the owner got home.

Prosecutor David Comb told Newcastle Crown Court the victim had been out for the evening and returned home shortly before midnight.

Mr Comb said: "He received an unwelcome surprise.

"The kitchen light had been turned on and in the living room there were remnants of a cooked chicken and empty cans of cider, which belonged to him and had been taken from the fridge.

"In the front bedroom he discovered this defendant, asleep in the dark, his shod feet poking out of the bottom of the blankets."

The court heard the owner realised Edmond had taken a claw hammer and a knife from the kitchen into the bedroom with him before falling asleep.

Edmond, who had been released from prison around a week before, did not pick up or brandish the weapons, even after the shocked victim woke him up.

But Mr Comb told the court: "This disturbed him enough to cause him to retreat from the bedroom."

The court heard the victim left his flat and went to a nearby pub where he contacted the police, who arrived and arrested Edmond while he was still inside.

The victim was shaken and shocked by the ordeal and has since moved home.

Edmond, of Haslett Avenue, South Shields, admitted burglary.

Judge Robert Adams sentenced him to 12 months behind bars.

The judge told him: "You helped yourself to some food and some drink from the fridge.

"There was remnants of chicken and mess on the floor where you had spilled alcohol.

"He found you asleep in the bedroom, still wearing your shoes, and turned the light on to confront you.

"You had just been released from custody. You clearly were under the influence of drink."

Gavin Doig, defending, said Edmond had been looking for somewhere to sleep after having too much to drink.

Mr Doig added: "The claw hammer and the knife were in the bedroom but, even though he woke up, he did not brandish them or cause extra fear."