A 55-YEAR-OLD who broke into a vehicle and stole a handbag a day after being released from court on bail has been jailed for four months at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Patrick Loyden pleaded guilty to the offence which happened in Greenbank Street, Galashiels, on Wednesday. A not guilty plea to a second charge of theft from a lockfast vehicle was accepted by the Crown.

Prosecutor India McLean said a witness in the area spotted a smashed vehicle window and Loyden walked away quickly from the scene carrying a blue holdall.

Defence lawyer Stephanie Clinkscale said her client had noticed the handbag "by chance" and carried out the theft as he was struggling to pay his heating bills.

She added that Loyden, formerly of Hillend Drive, Hawick, and now living in Galashiels, would benefit from a supervision order to keep him in check.

But Sheriff Kevin McCarron pointed out Loyden had been in court the day before the offence happened and was "out of control".

He said: "You are well out of the realms of supervision and into the realms of custody."

Due to the guilty plea he reduced the prison sentence from six months to four months.