Footprint at victim's home led to arrest
A BURGLAR who was caught out after leaving a muddy footprint in his victim's home has been jailed.
Paul Jones, 35, admitted burgling the home of Glyn Boxer on High Street, Abergwynfi, in Port Talbot in September.
Jones, who has a lengthy criminal record, including previous burglary offences, committed his first burglary aged 12, Swansea Crown Court heard.
Two years ago he was given an 18 month sentence for burglary.
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The house where he committed his latest offence was being renovated at the time due to storm damage, prosecutor Ieuan Rees said.
He said although it was being lived in during the week, the property was empty at weekends and Mr Boxer had left the house on Friday September 9, and did not return until two days later.
When he went back into the house, he found the glass door into the living room had been forced through and a window had also been opened.
He later discovered items including power tools and a 42 inch TV had been taken.
The goods stolen and the damage to the house were valued at £1,430.
Jones was arrested from his home at Jersey Road, Blaengwynfi, Port Talbot on September 17.
His trainers were taken by police and were tested by a forensics officer.
Mr Rees said: "The scientist came to the conclusion that the marks on the trainers and the footprint could not be made by any other shoes."
In his police interview, Jones denied the offence and said the footprint had come from his trainers but he later pleaded guilty.
Catherine Richards, representing Jones, said: "It's right he has a lengthy record and his first conviction for burglary is from when he was 12-years-old but the medical report shows he is in some difficulties."
She said her client had struggled to admit his guilt because he felt he was turning his life around.
"He had found it difficult to accept he was going back into prison and going back to a life he felt he had left behind," she added.
She said by him going to a doctor, it was the first time he had tried to address his problems.
Before jailing him for 12 months, Judge Paul Thomas said: "You know what happens if you continue breaking into people's homes."