Man broke into South Shields home of Good Samaritan who tried to help him

A homeless man desperate for shelter betrayed a Good Samaritan by breaking into her South Tyneside property for somewhere to stay.

A court heard how Colin Rutter, 31, had been allowed to live at the house in Chesterton Road, Biddick Hall, by the female owner who took pity on him.

But he had been asked to leave after the pair fell out due to his behaviour, the borough’s magistrates’ court heard.

And when she went to stay with relatives, Rutter, of no fixed abode, took the opportunity to break glass in a double glazed window to gain access.

The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.

The break-in, on Thursday, June 9, was reported to police and forensic analysis of blood found at the scene confirmed Rutter as the culprit.

Prosecutor Paul Anderson said: “She was acting as a Good Samaritan to Mr Rutter when he had nowhere to live.

“He was allowed to live in her property but subsequently he caused problems and overstayed his welcome.

“She had moved out of the address and was staying with family at a different address.

“She was told that damage had been caused to a window and that somebody appeared to have been in the house.

“Forensics showed that blood found was that of the defendant.”

The court was told Rutter, who pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage, has 16 previous convictions, the last in November 2020 resulting in a prison term.

Heather Bolton, defending, said: “He didn’t mean any harm or any upset to her.

“He does accept that he did stay at that property on a couple of occasions and that his blood was found.

“She was not at the property at the time. She has confirmed that he didn’t take anything.

“He knew that the property was empty and was desperate for somewhere to stay and he broke the window for that, it was for a couple of nights."

District Judge Zoe Passfield sentenced jobless Rutter to a 12-month conditional discharge, and ordered him to pay his victim £100 compensation.

She told him: “I’ve heard the mitigation but it’s not acceptable to force your way into someone’s property.”