Sunderland burglar treated himself to Burger King meal during spending spree with stolen bank cards

Steven Spencer
Steven Spencer

A burglar treated himself to a Burger King meal and went on a mini-shopping spree with stolen bank cards.

Steven Spencer, 49, snaked into a home in St Luke’s Road, Sunderland, on March 9, taking a wallet and purse while the occupants were still inside.

He then used the stolen cards to spend over £100 on goods including clothes, alcohol and chocolate.

Spencer also bought a meal deal at Burger King during his hour-long spending splurge, before his transactions triggered an alert sent to the victim by his bank about a suspicious transaction that had been made at News & Booze, in the Bridges Shopping Centre.

After finding his wallet had been stolen, the victim checked his recent history to find further transactions of more than £100 had been made at JD Sports, Boots and Wilko.

Spencer had also spent £7.69 at Burger King shortly after buying a rum and coke at a nearby pub.

Shortly after, the victim’s partner realised her purse had also gone – with fraudulent transactions also made from her account to the value of £29.10.

Police recovered CCTV footage that showed Spencer using the stolen card in a number of premises and he was arrested.

Detective Constable Alex Hadwin, of Northumbria Police, said: "Knowing an intruder has sneaked into your home can be incredibly unnerving for a victim, given the highly-intrusive nature of the crime.

"Steven Spencer showed little regard for his victims and then had the audacity to go to the pub and Burger King to spend their hard-earned money as part of an opportunistic spending spree.

"His selfish actions were totally unacceptable. I would like to reassure our communities that we are committed to tackling burglary and will actively pursue burglars to ensure they are brought to justice.

"Quite often, these types of incidents that we deal with at this time of year involve doors or windows not being locked or valuables being left on display.

"I would therefore ask residents to take an extra moment to check their front doors or locked, and make sure possessions such as bags, wallets and car keys are kept out of view and away from front doors or open windows."

Spencer, of no fixed abode, was also charged with a second burglary, which occurred on St Luke’s Terrace on February 23, after his blood was found on a broken window.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and three counts of fraud by false representation and will be sentenced later this year.