A sticky-fingered burglar's sweet tooth led to his capture after he left his fingerprints on an empty chocolate wrapper at the scene of his crime.
Robbie Haslett, 18, dropped the wrapper after breaking into a family home and ransacking it. But the victims noticed the foil packet and when it was tested for fingerprints, it led police to Haslett.
A judge heard that Haslett targetted two homes in Guildford, Surrey, overnight between July 26 and July 27 this year while the owners were asleep.
He struck as temperatures soared, forcing his way into the study of one of his victims after they had left two window vents open.
The next morning the shocked homeowner discovered that his spectacles case and briefcase has been moved.
"He searched the rest of the house and discovered a wallet on the kitchen table had been interfered with and cards moved around, but none taken," said Trina Little, prosecuting.
"He then noticed the wrapper of a chocolate bar which did not belong to him but was in the property."
At the same time a neighbour on the same street, who had left a small window open in her front lounge, awoke to find her purse had been moved from her handbag. A number of bank cards, £200 pounds in notes and five pounds in coins were taken.
Fingerprints found on the chocolate wrapper and on a window frame from the other break-in linked Haslett to the raids.
When police searched his home they also found missing scratch cards that had been stolen during a raid on a garage belonging to a One Stop Shop.
Judge Moss said: "Those who break into premises used by people to store items for their business strike at their work. Secondly, those who break into people's houses at night, strike into their hearts and lives. It is a terrifying experience for anybody."
He sentenced Haslett to a 30-month community order, which included a 30-month supervision requirement. He was also sentenced to 100 hours unpaid work, ordered to pay compensation of £200 pounds and a victim surcharge.