Retford man's thieving spree sparked by "horrific" accident

Mansfield Magistrates Court
Mansfield Magistrates Court

A Retford man went on a shoplifting spree to fund his heroin habit after witnessing his brother's  "horrific" road accident, a court heard.

Lee Hampton stole £725 worth of goods in nine separate thefts, including £200 of clothing from Matalan on July 7, and four bottles of Jack Daniels, from Morrisons, on July 28.

Ian Pridham, mitigating, said Hampton witnessed his brother getting knocked down by a police car, which left his brother permanently disabled.

"He struggled with that for a number of years," Mr Pridham said. "But it has gradually built and built. He witnessed his brother using drugs and he succumbed likewise.

"He did well at school and has worked in full time employment ever since.

"The wheels came off when he couldn't turn up for work and he was dismissed. He has sought help from drug workers."

The court heard he had one previous conviction from August 6, which resulted in a conditional discharge.

Probation officer Mark Burton said the offences were driven by Hampton's escalating drug use.

"He is currently working with the community drug team in Worksop but unfortunately his heroin use has increased beyond his income," he said.

He was diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder following the accident.

Hampton, 31, of Beechways, admitted the thefts and breaching the conditional discharge, when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Friday.

He received a 12 month community order, with a six month drug rehabilitation programme and ten rehabilitation days.

He was ordered to pay back half of what he stole to the various stores.

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