Drug addict with more than 100 shoplifting offences began stealing a month after being given a chance - The Leamington Observer

Drug addict with more than 100 shoplifting offences began stealing a month after being given a chance

A DRUG addict with 40 pages of previous convictions, including more than 100 offences of shoplifting, began stealing again just a month after being given a chance.

And a judge at Warwick Crown Court heard that Lee Wykes was stealing ‘on a daily basis’ to fund a heroin addiction.

The 19-year-old, of Pickard Street, Warwick, who had pleaded guilty to 14 charges of theft, was jailed for 28 weeks in his absence after he refused to leave his cell for the hearing.

And Judge Barry Berlin ordered him to serve the sentence consecutive to six weeks of a 20-month suspended sentence he was subject to at the time.

That had been imposed in January for two offences of theft and for frighteningly threatening a member of staff at one of the stores with an uncapped hypodermic needle.

On that occasion he escaped being jailed because he had already spent seven month in custody on remand and was said to have been drug-free during that time.

But prosecutor Jennifer Josephs said that a month later Wykes began stealing again by taking five bottles of wine from the Sainsbury’s store in Warwick, and repeatedly returned to the same places.

He went on to steal from M&S, the Co-op, a BP petrol station, Homebase, and Sainsbury’s again

Miss Josephs pointed out that Wykes had 342 previous offences on his record, including more than 100 thefts.

Graeme Simpson, defending, said: “He’s clearly a hopeless drug addict, stealing on a daily basis to fund his heroin habit.”

Sentencing Wykes, who had been due to appear via a video link from HMP Hewell, Judge Berlin said: “He has some 40 pages of previous convictions including 114 theft offences, and he’s in breach of a suspended sentence made in January this year. He is a practiced shoplifter.”


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