A SO-CALLED “third strike” burglar has been jailed by a judge for two-and-half years.

Teesside Crown Court heard how Dean Knight was caught red-handed by police after a neighbour saw him and another man, Michael Swan, break into a house in Charles Street, Middlesbrough.

Prosecutor Michael Bosomworth said a padlock was used to smash a rear window. He said: “It wasn’t the most professional of jobs, both ended up with cuts to their face.”

Mr Bosomworth said when police arrived Knight opened the door of the property to them. He said while nothing was stolen, there had been an untidy search and items including a television and games console had been moved in order that they could be taken.

Swan, meanwhile, was arrested after he was found in an alleyway to the rear of the house keeping a lookout.

Knight, 28, of Crescent Road, Middlesbrough, had been on bail when he broke into the home on April 2 this year.

The defendant, who has two previous convictions for burglary of a dwelling, admitted burglary and a separate offence of possessing an offensive weapon.

Both Knight and Swan, who also admitted burglary, had lengthy criminal records with Swan’s first appearance coming before the youth court in 1992.

Rebecca Dyson, for Knight, said he had been a heroin addict, but now had his addiction under control.

Peter Kilgour, for 34-year-old Swan, of West Lane, Middlesbrough, said his offending had slowed down and he had shown a positive response when supervised by the probation service.

Knight was jailed for two and-a-half years, while Swan received a six month jail term, suspended for two years, and an 18 month supervision order.