A SNEAK thief, who stole a woman’s purse from a handbag hanging from the handle of her husband’s wheelchair, has had her sentence put back.
Sabrina Maddock took the chance to steal Rhonda Martin’s property during a visit to her Hebburn home in August.
Newcastle Crown Court heard the 21-year-old thief and her partner, Stephen Wynne, had bumped into Mrs Martin and her husband, who is a tattooist, in the street.
It was when they all got back to Mrs Martin’s Hedgeley Road home that Maddock struck.
Prosecutor Neil Pallister told the court: “Mrs Martin’s husband is in a wheelchair.
“She left it on the path to open the front door.
“The defendant was observed by a neighbour to put her hand into the handbag of Mrs Martin, which was on the handlebars of the wheelchair, remove Mrs Martin’s purse and hand it over to the male, Wynne, who put it down his trousers.”
The court heard the couple, who had been tattooed by Mr Martin in the past, stayed at the house for 20 minutes.
It was only then Mrs Martin, 42, realised her purse, containing £24.50, was gone.
Wynne was given a suspended prison sentence during an earlier magistrates’ court hearing.
Maddock, who went on to steal more than £50 worth of meat from a supermarket, admitted theft and is already the subject of court orders due to previous offending.
Mr Recorder Reid deferred sentence in her case for three months.
The judge told her: “You are going to have to turn your life around. It is largely in your hands.
“If you commit any further offences of fail to comply with instructions given to you, then you almost certainly will receive a custodial sentence.”
Glenn Gatland, defending, said Maddock and her partner were homeless when they committed the offence.
Mr Gatland said: “She would like the opportunity of showing the court that she can keep out of trouble.”