Woman admits to trying to steal seven pairs of jeans from a South Shields shop
A public nuisance returned to offending weeks after her last court appearance when she tried to steal seven pairs of jeans from a South Tyneside store.
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Smith, of Albion Court, central South Shields, gave up the struggle to flee after being confronted by staff and seeing police arrive at teatime on Saturday, October 28.
At the start of the same month, she was banned by a court from entering several other town centre retailers, due to previous offending.
They were admitted crimes of causing criminal damage, theft from shop, being drunk and disorderly and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
Her offences included throwing red paint on windows at the Wouldhave pub, cracking glass at Tyne Bargains’ store and punching a woman in a McDonald’s outlet.
Of her jeans’ theft charge, prosecutor Paul Anderson said: “It’s very simple. She was in Bonmarché and took seven pairs of jeans.
“She was struggling with staff and then she saw the police arrive. She said, ‘You may as well have them back’. There are a lot of underlying matters.
“She said that she had done it because she had no money and took the jeans to sell to get some money for food and to pay for electricity. The items were recovered.”
At South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court, Smith pleaded guilty to a charge of theft from a shop.
Her previous offending led to the imposition of two 18-month community orders, each carrying 20 rehabilitation days.
A psychiatric report compiled before sentencing found Smith suffers mental health issues, which had led her to believe transmitters were embedded in her arms.
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David Forrester, defending, said: “This offence happened at 5.15pm on Saturday. She has spent 48 hours in custody.
“I would ask you to deal with this by way of a conditional discharge.”
The Probation Service told the hearing Smith had failed to engage with the requirements of the community orders but she was not yet in breach of them.
Magistrates sentenced Smith to a 12-month community order, with a £26 victim surcharge but no court costs.