A MAN who stole from shops after finding himself penniless on his release from prison has been placed under a curfew.

Darlington Magistrates’ Court heard today (Tuesday, March 11) that 27-year-old Martin Wilson spent his £31 release money on staying a night at a Darlington guest house when he was let out of prison on licence last month.

Without any other cash or source of income, Wilson went on to steal £30 worth of meat from a Darlington Sainsbury’s and toiletries and washing gels from the town’s Semi-Chem on February 24 and 25.

Wilson, who had previously been jailed for burglary, pleaded guilty to the thefts.

Mitigating, Rory Todd said Wilson was in the process of sorting out his benefits and had since found accommodation at the town's Hope House supported accommodation.

The court ordered him to obey a 7pm to 7am home curfew for 56-days and to pay £5 compensation to Sainsbury’s.