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A burglar broke into a pub and caused destruction worth thousands of pounds only to be found asleep in the bar the following morning.

Marius Petrikas used a metal bar to force entry into City Tavern, in Newcastle city centre, last summer, Chronicle Live reports.

Inside, he helped himself to a drink and went on a wrecking spree for no apparent reason, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

The owner, already struggling due to the impact of coronavirus, was left with losses of more than £21,000 as a result of Petrikas' actions.

It was in the early hours of the morning on August 5 last year that Petrikas, also know as Algis Likso, broke in, the court was told.

Alec Burns, prosecuting, said: "He was discovered at 6am that morning when the landlord found the door insecure.

"He could hear snoring so called the police, who attended and found the defendant asleep.

"He had wrecked the pub and barricaded himself using beer barrels and furniture.

"He pulled a camera off the wall, in the cellar he pulled a cooling unit off the wall."

Such was the extent of the damage, the pub could not open until repairs had been done.

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Owner David King told the court the final loss to the business was £21,450.

He added: "Covid-19 has had a massive financial impact on us and this burglary has happened at the worse possible time and has put livelihoods at risk.

"It felt like the last straw that broke the camel's back."

Mr King added that it had a detrimental impact on staff morale and that photographs of memorable events had been torn from the walls and destroyed.

Petrikas, 30, of Ashley Close, Killingworth, North Tyneside, pleaded guilty to burglary.

He was also in breach of a community order imposed for affray, assault and criminal damage worth more than £5,000 in Darlington when he trashed his home after being told to leave by the landlord.

Petrikas threw furniture out of the window, barricaded himself in and police tasered him six times but it had no effect.

Eventually, he jumped out of the window and split his head open before running at police officers, biting one of them as they arrested him.

Recorder Ben Nolan QC sentenced him to 12 months in prison but due to the time spent on remand, he will be released almost immediately.

The judge told him: "Having broke in your committed criminal damage by wrecking various feature within the pub then, bizarrely, you simply went to sleep on the sofa in the pub."

Recorder Nolan added that the offence was contributed to by his mental health problems.

Andrew Walker, defending, said: "One can only have great sympathy for hard-working business who have to deal with this sort of situation."

  • Crime

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