A ‘third strike’ burglar was caught by other residents after breaking into a room in a multi-occupancy Rugby house in the middle of the night.
And at Warwick Crown Court, Shane Harris pleaded guilty to burglary at the house in Glebe Crescent, Rugby.
Harris (32) of Newland Street, Rugby, was jailed for 876 days (just under two years and five months) - which represents the minimum three-year sentence for a third-strike burglar, minus a 20% discount for his plea.
Prosecutor Ian Speed said that in the early hours of March 16 Harris got into the house in Glebe Crescent, although his method of entry was not known.
One of the residents at the multi-occupancy address was woken at four in the morning by a commotion in the hallway outside his room.
He saw Harris, who was extremely drunk, being detained by other residents who had caught him coming out of the room.
Although Harris had not taken anything from that room, he had alcohol, food and clothing he had taken from another room in the house.
The police were contacted, and Harris, who had ‘extensive previous convictions’ and has served periods of custody both in this country and abroad while serving in the French Foreign Legion, was arrested.
When he was questioned he made full admissions, said Mr Speed, who pointed out it was Harris’s third conviction for domestic burglary.
Richard Baker, defending, said: “He’s had a problem with drugs for many years, and it got worse following a bereavement.
“His girlfriend gave birth to a child who was stillborn, and that’s something he’s never coped with. Since being remanded in custody he hasn’t heard from that girlfriend.”
Jailing Harris, Judge Anthony Potter told him: “This is something you’ve done before in 2012 and 2015, as well as committing other offences of dishonesty. This is the least possible sentence I can impose.”