A grieving son who claimed he turned to crime after his mother died from a reaction to a flu jab has been jailed.
Anthony Davison said he started using crack cocaine to cope with the loss of his mum, who died in January after being admitted to hospital with adverse symptoms on Christmas Day last year.
Newcastle Crown Court heard, as a result, the 28-year-old built up a debt to a dealer that was impossible to pay.
Davison, of Leamington Street, Sunderland, admitted burgling a vacant flat in his home city to steal copper cable he could sell to raise cash to put towards the debt.
He also admitted handing a stolen commercial grill, worth, £600, which police found hidden at his home.
Judge Edward Bindloss sentenced him to 10 months behind bars for the offences, which both happened in early September.
The judge said despite having previous convictions, Davison had shown himself to be capable of staying out of trouble.
Davison had sent a letter directly to the judge to the read before the hearing.
Judge Bindloss told him: "Your mother died from a reaction to a flu jab in January this year and you started taking crack cocaine and drinking alcohol.
"I have read in your letter about the severe effect this had upon you and your life. You eventually fell into debt to a drug dealer.
"The copper piping and grill were taken with a view to being sold on for you to pay money to the dealer of the crack cocaine."
Judge Bindloss said the offences were aggravated by Davison's criminal record, and that a jail term could not be avoided.
Alec Burns, defending, said Davison had been doing well until he started taking drugs to cope with his mother's death and has now sought help to cope with the bereavement and hopes to run a cafe with his partner.
Mr Burns said Davison's mum received the flu jab on December 12 last year, her son's birthday.
Mr Burns added: "She was admitted to hospital on Christmas Day and died within days. From a reaction to the flu jab.
"There was a note on her GP file to say she should not have it, but that is another matter altogether.
"The result was, she had it and was dead within weeks."