Suspended jail sentence for serial shoplifter
A PERISTENT shoplifter who helped himself to everything from electric toothbrushes to meat has been given a suspended jail term.
Prolific thief Alan King carried out a spate of snatches from Bristol stores in September, October and November, magistrates heard.
The 33-year-old, of Peverell Court, pleaded guilty to six thefts from shops and asked for a further one to be considered.
Magistrates gave him a 26-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.
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He was ordered to be supervised for 18 months, have nine months of drug rehabilitation and pay costs and compensation of £200.88.
Laura Opie, prosecuting, said King stole various goods worth £376.35 from Aldi in Bradley Stoke but was captured on CCTV and the goods were recovered.
Mrs Opie said that four days later King snatched toys worth £82.47 from Argos at Cribbs Causeway.
When arrested he said he was getting birthday presents for his niece and nephew as he hadn't wanted to let them down.
King also grabbed electric toothbrushes from Lloyds Chemist at Westbury-on-Trym as well as Joop aftershave from Boots Chemist in the city centre, the court heard.
On that occasion he said he had simply wanted to use the spray tester and was stopped by a security guard.
Mrs Opie said King's stealing also included £20 worth of chocolates from the Co-op in Henbury and he asked for theft of £70 worth of meat from the Co-op in Shirehampton to be considered.
Peter Richardson, mitigating, said the offences took his client's record of convictions to 69, nearly all of which were for dishonesty offences.
He said: "Most were similar in nature to those before you today.
"He has addiction to drugs that he's struggled with for a number of years.
"There has been no attempt at any form of rehabilitation in the community since 2009."
Mr Richardson said the offending was unsophisticated and items were recovered on a number of occasions.
Mr Richardson said: "He's probably well known in most shops he goes into. He pleaded guilty at the first opportunity."