A prolific burglar was caught when he left DNA on a glass after he broke into a house and drank some water because he was thirsty, a court has heard.
Steven Jones, 26, tricked his way into the house by knocking on the front door and asking the 15-year-old son of the homeowner if he could go inside.
The intimidated teenager let him in the house and gave Jones a glass of water after he said he was thirsty.
Jones then casually told him: “I’m here to rob your house,” before making off with an iPad and fleeing after the brazen break-in in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffs., on September 22 last year.
But he was caught days later when police matched DNA he left on the glass tumbler with the police database and Jones was arrested.
Jones was jailed for two-and-a-half years after he pleaded guilty to burglary at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court on Thursday.
Sentencing Jones, Judge Paul Glenn told him: “You entered this house effectively uninvited.
“It would have been a frightening experience for a 15-year-old boy, who was alone at the time, particularly when you said you were there to rob the house.
“You have already served three significant sentences for offences of burglary.
“You are wasting your life.”
The court heard Stevens and a friend knocked on the front door of the detached house which was answered by the lad who was home alone while his mum was out shopping.
Prosecutor Neil Ahuja said: “The defendant asked to come in – the 15-year-old did not say anything.
“He was feeling intimidated, scared, helpless and worried.
“The defendant went in to the house and asked for a glass of water. He then said: ‘I am here to rob the house’.”
The court heard Jones has 13 previous convictions after being arrested for 29 offences, including 10 house burglaries.