A THIEF who went into Marks and Spencer and smashed eight bottles of wine later told police he wasn't coping with life and wanted to go to prison.

Blackburn magistrates heard it wasn't the first time this year Jordan Murphy had 'volunteered' himself for a prison sentence by committing offences with the intention of getting caught.

The 37-year-old, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to damaging eight bottles of wine worth £64 and theft of three magazines and a sandwich. He was sentenced to 12 weeks in prison and ordered to pay £115 victim surcharge on release.

Catherine Allan, prosecuting, said Murphy went into Marks and Spencer and started taking bottles of wine off the shelves and smashing them on the floor. He selected some magazines and a sandwich and when he was challenged outside the store, stopped and waited for the police to arrive.

"He told police he wasn't coping with life and wanted to go to prison," said Miss Allan. "He said he wasn't under the influence of drink or drugs and that if he wasn't sent to prison he would smash up police cars or whatever was in front of him."

Gareth Price, defending, said he appreciated it wasn't for his client to dictate what sentence he received.

"However, he makes it clear that what he said to the police he meant," said Mr Price. "He has drug, alcohol and mental health problems. He has been sent to prison on five occasions in the last 12 months, a number of those for criminal damage in similar circumstances."

Mr Price said his client would not engage with the probation service and the only sentence the magistrates could properly impose was an immediate custodial sentence.