A thirsty thief stole a crate of lager from a South Tyneside store in a ‘moment of daftness’ – before drinking the evidence.
Marc Brunton was seen by a store worker making off with the haul of booze from McColls, in Edinburgh Road, Jarrow.
He was later identified by police from store CCTV footage.
However, when police caught up with him, Brunton and a group of pals had already drank the £10 crate of Carling.
The 24-year-old admitted shop theft when he appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.
Janice Bellamy, prosecuting, said: “The incident occurred at about 5.15pm on Thursday, August 27. “The defendant picked up a crate of Carling lager and left without making payment.
“CCTV footage was provided to police and he was identified and arrested.
“He said in interview he had carried out the theft in a moment of daftness and said he had drank the lager.”
Christopher Brown, defending, said: “He accepts he committed the offence.
“He and some friends consumed the lager.”
Brunton, of Inverness Road, Jarrow, was given a six-month conditional discharge by magistrates.
He must also pay a £150 criminal courts charge as well as prosecution costs of £85, a £15 victim surcharge and £10 compensation to McColls.