Burglar almost died after falling from snooker club window
A Christmas Day burglar was found unconscious in a pool of his own blood under a broken window of a snooker club.
Karl Hogg, 27, ended up in a coma and suffering from two fractured knee caps, a broken arm and spinal damage.
Magistrates heard that, before he fell from the first-storey window, Hogg had wreaked havoc at Houghton Snooker Club – stealing £800 from gaming machines and causing £3,000 of damage.
Appearing before Sunderland Magistrates Court in a neck brace, he asked to remain standing.
Hogg, of Baker Street, Houghton, pleaded guilty to burglary.
Glenda Beck, prosecuting, said staff had locked up the premises, in Newbottle Street, at 10.15pm on Christmas Eve but, at 11.30pm the next day, police were alerted by an alarm.
She said: “Immediately under the entry and exit point window was Mr Hogg. The officers could see that he was seriously injured, with a lot of blood. He was taken to hospital in an ambulance, in a coma due to his injuries.”
The court heard various gaming machines had been smashed and their cash boxes, along with those of two snooker tables had been removed. An empty till at the bar was also damaged.
“One of the cash boxes was found on the window ledge,” Ms Beck added. “Mr Hogg was found directly below that window.
“He was detained at Newcastle RVI hospital as a result of these injuries. He was arrested on January 17, following his release.”
The club’s manager said in a statement: “I didn’t expect something like this to happen on Christmas Day. The cost of the damage is substantial and we could lose business as a result.”
Neil Hodgson, defending, asked for a probation assessment to be carried out.
He said: “He suffered two broken knee caps, a broken arm and a broken part of his spine. Because of the injuries sustained by Mr Hogg, his current community order has been put in some doubt.”
The bench said their sentencing powers were insufficient and committed the case to Newcastle Crown Court, on April 11.