A SHOPLIFTER stole because he was hungry, a court heard.
John George Jones took two learner driver kits from a shop in High Street West, Sunderland.
A community support officer spotted Jones leaving The Works with the kits, worth £19.98, under his coat, on March 26.
When he was arrested and searched, a 15-centimetre kitchen knife was found in his pocket.
Jones, of Torquay Road, Thorney Close, told police he was hungry and wanted to be arrested.
He admitted theft and possession of a knife, at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court.
Jeanette Smith, prosecuting, said the 46-year-old claimed he had been cutting buns with the knife the previous day, and did not realise it was in his pocket.
Susan Grey, mitigating, said Jones had reached rock bottom after being made subject to a community order on May 23, and went into a detoxification programme, leaving him clean of drugs.
She said: “The situation on this day was that he had not eaten for a couple of days.
“He went into the shop and carried out the items in full public view, expecting to be arrested and was arrested.”
District Judge Roger Elsey told Jone made Jones subject to a 28-day curfew, from 7pm until 8am.