A MAN has appeared in court after stealing money from a birthday card belonging to a young boy.
Matthew Boothroyd, of Ivy Street in Crosland Moor, took the £10 note after it was posted through the 10-year-old’s door.
He reached through the cat flap of the Blackmoorfoot Road house and ripped open the envelope containing the cash.
Boothroyd then posted the empty card back inside.
Yesterday Kirklees magistrates heard that he was sorry for his crime, particularly after realising the age of the victim.
Lauren Prentice, prosecuting, said that the theft happened on May 9.
The owner of the back-to-back house had left in the morning to drop her children off at school.
She returned after visiting a friend at 4.30pm.
Miss Prentice said: “She entered the kitchen, put her shopping down and realised that there was some mail which she picked up off the floor.
“One was an envelope which had been opened. It contained a birthday card for her son.
“In it there was a note which stated that there was money in the card. “However there was no money and at that point she suspected that she had been burgled.”
Neighbours told her that they had seen a man near to the house while she was away.
Police took fingerprints from the card and these were used to identify Boothroyd, who admitted the theft.
The 20-year-old told officers that he had been visiting a cousin at a house that shared the passageway with the house.
He said he was there smoking a cigarette when he noticed the mail through the cat flap.
Miss Prentice said: “He reached through the cat flap, removed the envelope and the money before posting it back through the cat flap.”
Magistrates were told that Boothroyd had two convictions for robbery and theft.
Mark Brookes, mitigating, said that the offence involved limited intrusion into the property.
Magistrates gave Boothroyd a community order for 12 months, including 80 hours of unpaid work.
The bench also ordered Boothroyd to pay £10 compensation to the lad and to pay £85 court costs.