How a footprint snared a Sunderland burglar who raided his friend’s family home

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A teenage burglar was traced by a footprint he left after he broke into a friend’s family home,

Dylan Sanderson, 19, raided the house after climbing through a window on February 24.

He’s made reparation to his friend, he’s gone as far as saying ‘I’m really sorry for this’. They do speak, but it’s not like it used to be

Angus Westgarth, defending

Once inside the property, in South View, Shiney Row, he emptied a tin of change and took an e-cigarette and mobile phone charger, Sunderland magistrates heard.

Sanderson was snared by police after a print from his training shoes was traced back to him.

Prosecutor Laura Lax said: “At 10.30am on February 24, the victim left her property secure, apart from a utility window, which was slightly open, because the tumble dryer was on in the property.”

The court heard the woman returned at 12.40pm and did not initially realise anything was wrong.

Miss Lax added: “She then noticed some items were missing and other items had been moved.”

A jar with £20 of change, and e-cigarette worth £15 and a phone charger worth £22, were missing.

Sanderson, of Dundas Street, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to burglary and theft.

The court heard he has four previous convictions for five offences.

The victim said in a statement, read out in court: “This incident has left me very upset. Somebody has come into my house and taken my property.

“I have a three-year-old daughter and my main concern is for her safety.”

Angus Westgarth, defending, said Sanderson had become estranged from his own family as a result of the burglary.

He said: “He’s 19 years old and was on a cocktail of drugs. His memory came back and, being a friend’s house, makes it slightly worse as well.

“He’s apologised to the boy but hasn’t been able apologise to the lady.

“He can remember getting £3.75 from the tin and having an e-cigarette, but apart from that his memory is poor.

“He is very contrite. It’s caused him to fall out with his family.”

He added: “He’s made reparation to his friend. He’s gone as far as saying ‘I’m really sorry for this’.

“They do speak but it’s not like it used to be.”

Sanderson was sentenced to a six-month community order, with a six-week curfew from 7pm to 7am from Thursday until Sunday, and was also told to pay £85 costs, a £60 surcharge and £38 in compensation.