A man who was about to be convicted for shoplifting was spared a jail sentence because he needed to put out cat food for his pet kitty.
District judge David Cooper was about to send Steven Thorne to jail but back-tracked after hearing about Mr Thorne's cat, Laura, reports the Sun.
Mr Thorne's defence lawyer Julie Brice explained that Laura had been at home alone since her owner's arrest and because there was no cat flap installed, she would be very hungry.
Judge Cooper was bemused at the excuse but decided to let Mr Thorne go with a £75 fine and an order to install a cat flap.
He is quoted as saying: "Is this a good reason not to send him to prison, because he has a cat? I've never heard of that.
"Would you kindly think of your cat a bit more before you start shoplifting again."
A cat flap allows a kitty to come in and go out of the house without have to have a door opened for them. It is thought that around 90 per cent of cats in the UK have access to a cat flap.