Retired man stole from Asda ‘to get a buzz’

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A RETIRED man who stole £70 worth of groceries from a South Tyneside store said he only carried out the theft because he “got a buzz out of it”.

Bernard Fanning was spotted by staff taking the goods from the Asda supermarket, in North Road, Boldon, and was detained in the store until police turned up to arrest him.

The 56-year-old had £40 with him and told officers ‘I’m financially all right’. Fanning admitted a charge of shop theft when he appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

The offence took place on Monday, November 17.

Paul Anderson, prosecuting, said: “He was detained at the store and the goods were recovered.

“He was arrested and interviewed at the police station. They noticed he had £40 on him.

“He said ‘yes, I’m financially all right. I just got a buzz out of it. It was about the thrill of the chase’.

“He said he didn’t know what he was going to do with the goods. It is a slightly unusual case.”

Valerie Bell, defending, said: “Mr Fanning has got to the age of 56 having never been before the courts in his life.

“He has has pleaded guilty immediately and made full admissions to the police when he was arrested.

“It is not a question of him being short of money.

“It was about the buzz he got at the time.

“He believes he maybe suffering from depression. He is retired and is a single man.”

Fanning, of Cooperative Terrace, Gateshead, was fined £70 by magistrates.

He was also ordered to pay court costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £20.