Burglar targeted Leeds market and city centre pub

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A career burglar has been jailed over break-ins at Leeds Market and a city centre pub.

Mark McCulloch, 42, was jailed for two years after a court heard he broke into a disused toilet in a bid to steal copper piping and then targeted the Palace in the middle of the night.

McCulloch forced open a door at the market on Kirkgate during the day on May 4 this year.

Police were called and arrested him as he was in the process of trying to dismantle copper piping.

Louise Pryke, prosecuting, told Leeds Crown Court that water was spraying from the walls when officers arrived as a result of the damage he had caused.

McCulloch was found in possession of a bag of tools which included a screwdriver, scissors and a knife.

McCulloch, of Harehills Avenue, Leeds, was released on bail but targeted the Palace in the early hours of June 24.

The landlady was upstairs in private quarters around 3.30am when McCulloch smashed a window to get into the pub.

He then pulled a cigarette machine off its fixings and began smashing it on the floor.

The landlady was alerted by an alarm and was frightened as she was alone at the time.

McCulloch caused £150 worth of damage to the machine before he was arrested.

He pleaded guilty to two offences of burglary and one of possessing a bladed weapon.

He has 60 previous convictions, including burglary, dating back to 1986.

The court heard much of McCulloch’s offending was linked to alcohol and he had nowhere to live at the time of committing the offences.

Referring to the landlady’s ordeal during the pub burglary, judge Guy Kearl, QC, said: “This was no doubt a frightening experience.”

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