TWO boys aged eight and 12 carried out a burglary at a Derby house.
The youngsters were caught red-handed in Eve Warren’s house in Essex Street, Chaddesden, by her grandson, Craig Lakin.
The 19-year-old heard noises and was stunned when the boys opened the living room door, where he was watching TV.
At Derby Youth Court, the 12-year-old was found guilty after a trial in which magistrates said he had told a “confused and contradicting” story in a desperate attempt to avoid his third theft-related conviction.
He accused the eight-year-old of being behind the crime. He claimed the youngster had previously broken into the house and stolen money.
After being convicted, the 12-year-old was given a 14-hour attendance centre order.
The eight-year-old was not prosecuted because he is below the age of criminal responsibility. Police have spoken to the boy and his parents.
Ms Warren, who runs a florist’s shop in Alvaston, said the 12-year-old, who cannot be named, had been “terrorising” the neighbourhood.
She said: “Neighbours have had keys stolen, cash gone missing, the side of a conservatory ripped off, sand pushed up their car exhaust and bricks thrown at their window.
“I’ve gone to his house and got items back but his parents don’t do anything about it.
“What annoys me most is he’s brought other kids into what he does.”
The 60-year-old said she believed it was the fifth time the 12-year-old boy had stolen or tried to steal from her. Cash, keys, a handbag and three phones had gone missing.
Ms Warren said she only involved police on the fourth and fifth occasions because she had initially decided to give the youngster the “benefit of the doubt”. But she said he had now gone too far.