A burglar who ransacked an education centre for equipment has been convicted – after he dropped a blood-soaked tissue at the crime scene.
Anthony Kirtley, 30, raided the Learning Curve Group premises in Sunderland during summer 2019.
He snatched several laptops, computer monitors and power tools worth about £5,500 and caused a further £3,500 worth of damage inside the premises on Pallion Industrial Estate.
But in his haste Kirtley left behind a blood-stained tissue and a cupboard door smeared with his DNA, which he had ripped from its hinges.
He was subsequently arrested and charged by police.
Kirtley, of Cossack Terrace, Sunderland, pleaded guilty to burglary at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court on 10 January.
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PC Sophie Harkness of Northumbria Police said: “Kirtley showed a total disregard for the community where he lives as he smashed his way into the centre which is used by students to better themselves by learning new skills and gaining qualifications.
“He then ransacked the building, ripped items off the walls and stole thousands of pounds worth of electronic goods.
“As a result of his selfish and reckless actions, he deprived others of key educational materials and a number of scheduled sessions had to be cancelled due to the extent of the damage.
“In his haste to escape detection after getting his hands on an array of stolen property, he left a number of clues behind at the scene which ensured we identified him as the culprit and turned up at his door.”
Kirtley is due to be sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court on 5 February.