Thieves stole food because they were ‘skint’

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A THIEF stole more than £70 of goods from a South Tyneside store with a friend because he was “skint”.

Richard Whitesmith and James Laing snatched meat and other food items from Morrisons, in Ocean Road, South Shields, on Saturday.

When arrested, Whitesmith said to police: “I was skint. It was an easy way to get money.”

Whitesmith, 35 and Laing, 28, both of Howe Street, Gateshead, pleaded guilty to shop theft at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

The duo were seen emptying the food into a bag and leaving the store without paying.

Whitesmith was handed a £73 fine and ordered to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £20.

A probation report will be completed on Laing before he is sentenced at the court on February 6.


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