Drunk burglar raided family’s home – while they were in a refuge after suffering racial abuse

Court News
Court News
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A WOMAN’s home was burgled while she and her children sought safety in a refuge after suffering racial abuse.

The woman and her children had moved out of their home in Bideford Gardens, in South Shields, after becoming targets for hate from a neighbour.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that, while the family were away, their home came under attack and property was taken or moved.

Paul Black, 19, of Lindisfarne Road, Jarrow, admitted burglary, and a shoeprint matching his was found inside the house.

Prosecutors accepted he went into the house after a drunken night with friends but did not steal or move anything. Neil Pallister, prosecuting, told the court: “One particular neighbour moved into the area and the victim began to receive racial abuse from the neighbour. As a result, the victim was moved out to a refuge with her children.”

The court heard her television was found in a garden nearby.

Graeme Cook, defending, said Black has never been in trouble before and this “stupidity in drink” could destroy his dreams of joining the fire service or armed forces.

Judge John Evans sentenced Black to a community order with 150 hours unpaid work.

The judge said: “This is your first time before any court and you have thrown away your good character.”