A Corby Glen man admitted stealing items from three Grantham charity shops and a discount store on the same morning and the burglary of a garage from which he stole a case of wine.
Martin Kevin Prince, 33, of Barleycroft Road, admitted the burglary in Walsingham Drive, Corby Glen, on December 22. He also admitted stealing a can of Lynx body spray worth £2 from Tuffies Discount Store in Grantham on January 6, and on the same day stealing a pair of black Adidas trousers worth £5.50 from the Sue Ryder charity shop, three T-shirts worth £8 from the Scope charity shop and a T-shirt worth £1.99 from the St Barnabas charity shop.
Prosecuting, Shelley Wilson told Grantham magistrates that Prince entered Tuffies and spoke to the owner, asking him if he could leave his bag by the till. He was then seen on CCTV taking a can of Lynx body spray and putting it in his pocket. He took his bag and walked out of the shop.
The owner followed him into the George Centre where she challenged him. He accepted taking the spray and retrieved it from a bin. Police searched him and found other items of clothing stolen from charity shops. In a police interview, he accepted all four thefts.
Mrs Wilson said at 4pm on Sunday, December 22, Prince was walking down Walsingham Drive when he noticed a garage door was open. He walked in and took a case of wine. He was seen by a neighbour, who contacted the owner of the house.
Police found Prince nearby with a holdall containing the wine. One of the bottles had been partly drunk.
Prince was arrested and told police he was on his way back from playing football when he noticed the garage door open. He took the case and believed he had dropped it when he heard a police siren, but police found five bottles intact and one half drunk.
Mrs Wilson said the garage was connected to the house but Prince had not entered the house.
Defending, Giles Tyas said Prince was out of work which he wasn’t used to. He had been back in the country for two years after working in Stockholm in Sweden as a chef for 15 years. He had returned to the UK because his mother was having problems and he had found it ddifficult to find work.
He suffered from epilepsy and had lost his last job because he had had a fit and had not told his employers about his condition.
Mr Tyas said: “These offences were opportunistic and silly. He was suffering from some financial hardship at the time.”
After reading a probation report, the magistrates gave Prince a 12 month community order to complete 80 hours of unpaid work.
They also ordered him to pay £85 costs, a victim surcharge of £60 and compensation for the wine he had drunk of £3.66.