A RENTON man with more than 10 house breaking convictions has been jailed for almost four years.

Iain McTear smashed the front door of the Scottish Submarine Centre in Helensburgh in June with the entire incident captured on CCTV.

Cameras caught McTear sizing up the premises three days before the break-in and he pleaded guilty to theft by housebreaking at a hearing earlier in October.

The 41-year-old admitted stealing a till drawer and its contents and forcing open a donation box and stealing the cash from inside.

At Dumbarton Sheriff Court on October 30, McTear was said to be a native of the Renton area but had lived in Liverpool for a considerable time.

Defence solicitor Brian McGuire said his client only returned to the west of Scotland a few weeks before the incident when his father had taken unwell.

McTear had made an application for Universal Credit that was still being processed while he was also refused a community care grant. He was going back and forth between a private let in Helensburgh and his parents’ home in Renton.

Mr McGuire said: “He turned to drink and found himself in the situation where this offence was committed. He has no recollection of this offence.”

Sheriff William Gallacher said there were 10 or more convictions for housebreaking or burglary, and 24 more for dishonesty.

The sheriff told McTear that had he broken into someone’s personal home and caused damage, he would have considered whether he needed to send him to the High Court for a stiffer sentence.

He jailed McTear for 45 months, backdated to June 19 when he was taken into custody.

The previous hearing heard that McTear was found in West Clyde Street in the early hours of June 18 carrying a bag containing a large item. He dropped the bag and made off. When they caught him, the stolen till was found in the bag.

Fiscal depute Kevin Doherty said: “CCTV footage clearly shows the accused throwing a slab through the glass pane of the front door; he is seen to enter the premises and to exit again five minutes later, carrying the black till.”

“Enquiries revealed a perspex donation box had been broken into and the contents removed.

“The accused’s prints were found on the handle of the discarded bag.”

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