A THIEF who targeted four South Tyneside sheds in a break-in spree has been given community service.
Kevin Stamps was found in the garden of a house in Elmsleigh Gardens, Cleadon, in the early hours of June 1.
The 36-year-old was stopped by police who found him in possession of a screwdriver, torch and gloves.
A search of the area revealed he had also broken into two other sheds nearby and tried to break into two more.
Officers also found a bike and a case of beer stashed in bushes and some cannabis on Stamps, who had travelled to Cleadon from his home in Wellington Walk, Washington, to carry out the burglaries.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary, two counts of attempted burglary and one of possessing a Class B drug at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.
Stan Sudworth, prosecuting, said: “It was 3.45am on June 1 when a witness saw Stamps in the garden of a house in Elmsleigh Gardens.
“The police were called and found him in the back of a house further down the road.
“He was searched and they found gloves, a screwdriver and a torch.”
Investigations revealed a shed, in nearby Thornleigh Gardens, had been broken into and a £300 bike stolen.
Mr Sudworth added: “The bike was found with a case of beer which had been stolen from a shed in a third property in Elmsleigh Gardens.
“There was damage to a shed door and a fence at the first two Elmsleigh properties, but nothing was stolen.”
Magistrates were given a report on Stamps by the probation service which recommended giving him unpaid work.
Sandra Fife, defending, said: “You have a very detailed report about him.
“He has never been in trouble for burglary before and has never been involved with probation before.
“He is out of work at the moment but has a very good possibility of getting employment.”
Magistrates gave Stamps a 12-month community order with 120 hours of unpaid work and ordered him to pay £130 compensation to the shed owners.
He was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge.