A BURGLAR caught in an ensuite bathroom has avoided jail after convincing a judge he can stay off drugs.
Blaise Silvester was chased out of a house in St David’s Road, Somers Town, when the householder in bed spotted the 28-year-old’s silhouette in the doorway at around 3am.
Portsmouth Crown Court heard the man, who leapt out of bed to chase the burglar, was unable to catch him.
He watched as Silvester fled through a cloakroom into the home’s porch and away with a second man waiting outside.
Prosecutor Anthony Bailey told how Silvester, of Stubbington Avenue, Copnor, took a blue bag containing an old Kindle bought for £155.
When the victim reported the burglary to police the day after the September 2 raid forensics officers examined the property.
Fingerprints linked bricklayer Silvester to the crime and he was arrested. Police told him shoe prints left on the toilet in the upstairs front bedroom en-suite could have also proved he was the burglar.
The drug addict, who has eight convictions for 18 offences, has a history of violence and was jailed in 2015 for previous burglary when he fell out of a window at a family friend’s home in Farmside Gardens, Hilsea.
But silver-tongued Silvester persuaded judge William Ashworth he has done well in prison on remand.
Speaking via a video-link from jail, Silvester read a letter penned to the judge saying ‘drugs and alcohol have plagued my life’.
He said: ‘I’m currently wasting my life, my mid-20s have been steeped in chaos.’
He added: ‘I have been responsible and therefore accountable I’m deeply sorry and ashamed for my actions but I can’t seem to beat my demons on my own.’
The burglar must pay £300 compensation to the householder, complete 30 rehabilitation days and a three-month curfew between 8pm-6am.
Suspending an 18-month sentence for a year, judge Ashworth said: ‘I’m satisfied you’re making genuine efforts to deal with your actions and are genuinely attempting to turn your life around rather than just saying that.’
He suspended the term as Silvester admitted the burglary early on and there was prospect he could rehabilitate.
When he was arrested at home police found a small amount of cannabis, a class B drug. He admitted possession and received no separate penalty.
Silvester had accessed the burgled home through a window. It had been left unlocked but was shut at night.