A landlord caught two thieves red-handed and locked them in his beer cellar.
The hapless pair, who were stealing beer from the Sitwell Arms in Renishaw, were forced to call the police themselves - to ask them to come and let them out.
The youths had been raiding the hotel’s cellar when they were spotted by owner John Selby.
As the pair tried to make off with the booze quick-thinking Mr Selby, 66, forced them back down into the cellar and locked the door.
He said: “A neighbour across the road phoned to say they’d seen someone breaking in to cellar.
“I saw one of the lads coming up with a case of beer.
“It was just an instant reaction. I shoved him back down into the cellar and locked the door, charged round to lock the other door then called 999.”
But the teenagers who were only trapped in the cellar for around 15 minutes, had already called the police - and their parents - to ask them to come and release them.
Mr Selby said the pair were attempting to steal £140 worth of beer.
Police officers were called to the hotel at around 4pm on December 18.
The men - a 19-year-old and an 18-year-old, both from Renishaw, admitted the burglary and received cautions.
But Mr Selby said he felt more should have been done.
He added: “I will be writing to my MP. They were caught red-handed, it’s no deterrent.
“I think they should have at least been made to do some work in the community.”
A police spokesman said a caution is given to adults who admit they are guilty of first-time minor offences.