Bricklayer carried out burglary at Leeds building site and stole more than £4,000 worth of tools

A bricklayer burgled a building site in Leeds and stole more than £4,000 worth of tools and equipment.

Daniel Sutcliffe targeted a house that was undergoing renovation on Cemetery Road, Yeadon.

Leeds Crown Court heard workmen left the site on the evening of July 13 last year and when they returned the following morning they found the garage door open and hanging off its rails.

Wooden boarding had also been ripped down and a crow bar was on the ground nearby.

Leeds Crown Court

Items stolen included boxes of tools and drill bits, saws and a radio.

Sutcliffe also removed a central heating boiler worth £1,500 from the property but it was found nearby.

The defendant's DNA was recovered from the scene and he was arrested.

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Sutcliffe denied being the burglar, claiming he had been working at the site.

An Adidas trainer found at his home had a footprint pattern which matched one recovered from the scene.

A tool box and radio were also found in his home.

He was charged with burglary but was arrested again when he failed to attend court.

Sutcliffe, 33, of Southgate Apartments, Bradford, pleaded guilty to burglary and failing to surrender to court.

He has previous convictions for theft and trespassing on a railway.

Daniel Ingham, mitigating, said Sutcliffe was a bricklayer but had been struggling to find work during the pandemic.

He also needed to pay people who worked for him and committed the offence due to financial problems.

Probation officer Malcom Brown told the court: "He says he's been very stupid and made the decision to commit the offence after driving past the site."

Sutcliffe was given a nine-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months.

He was also ordered to do 100 hours of unpaid work and was made the subject of an electronically-tagged curfew order for four weeks.

Sentencing, Recorder Nicholas Lumley QC said: "You put those builders at considerable inconvenience and expense.

"You turned on people like yourself who work hard to pay for such tools as this to feed themselves and their families."