A 65-year-old woman has been given a community service order “for the last time” after shoplifting.
Teena Fletcher entered a guilty plea after being charged with the theft of two packets of XLS Medical Tablets from Boots the Chemist. Fletcher had received community service orders in 2016 and 2019 for other thefts.
Fletcher appeared in the Magistrate’s Court on Thursday [1 September]. The Crown advocate laid out the facts that Fletcher was seen on CCTV footage stealing the high-value items from the St Sampson’s store on 20 May.
Pictured: Fletcher committee the offence at Boots the Chemist on the Bridge.
“CCTV footage showed that she picked up a box of the tablets, read the box, picked up a second pack, walked off, put both boxed in her handbag, walked around the shop more and then left without paying.”
The court heard that the product was kept “in low stock” on the shelves due to its vale. The two packets were valued at a total of £119.98.
Fletcher was arrested at her home in June and later made a full admission to police. Duty Advocate Simon Florance said that Fletcher “can’t explain her actions”.
“She had the money and did not have a need for the tablets. Stealing fills and emptiness inside her that she has had since childhood,” said Advocate Florance.
“She has a very sad history and upbringing. At the heart of this you cannot help but feel that she needs help. She has a long history of reoffending. There seemed to be a disconnect that she was waiting for help to come to her, but she has now taken a positive step forward and has an upcoming appointment with Mind.”
Pictured: Judge Graeme McKerrell said that Fletcher would "go straight to prison" if she shoplifts again.
Judge Graeme McKerrell said that he “did not dispute” that Fletcher had a difficult life.
“There is no point blaming others when you haven’t previously sought help. I am pleased to hear that you have started that journey [to get help],” he said
“A time will come where you will go straight to prison. You won’t get any other chances.”
Fletcher was ordered to pay £119.98 and complete 100 hours of community service.