Prolific thief who 'turned to God' banned from Marks & Spencer for stealing coats
A 39-YEAR-old prolific thief has been banned from entering Marks & Spencer in Worcester city centre after stealing coats from the store.
Thomas Allen, of Cherwell Court, Worcester, has more than 40 previous convictions and we reported last year had turned to God in an attempt to stop his offending.
But Allen appeared at Worcester Magistrates Court on Thursday, (March 30), to admit his latest offence of theft from a shop.
Eleanor Peart, prosecuting, said at 9.45am on February 15 this year staff at the High Street store witnessed Allen run out with coats having not paid.
A security guard gave chase running into The Shambles with members of the public pointing in which direction Allen had headed.
During the chase Allen dropped one of the coats while police later recovered two others from bushes.
Miss Peart said: "In his interview he admitted entering the store intending to steal as he had no money.
"He committed the offence during the operation of a community order given for five counts of dishonesty matters, including theft."
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Mark Turnbull, defending, said there had been nothing sophisticated in the thefts, picking up three children's coats and running out.
He said all three coats had been recovered with Allen admitting his guilt straightaway to police.
Mr Turnbull said: "Mr Allen has been dealing with a heroin addiction for the past 20 years.
"He isn't going to conquer that addiction overnight."
The solicitor explained, at the time of the offence, Allen received news about a family member's cancer, using heroin to cope.
But he said Allen was now doing well on a methadone script.
"This is a bump in the road," Mr Turnbull added.
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Jayne Burton, chairman of the magistrates bench, said Allen was being fined £80.
She said a one-year community order was being made with the requirement Allen must not enter Marks and Spencer for the next year.
Allen was also ordered to pay costs of £135 and victim surcharge of £32.
No compensation was ordered as the coats, worth a total of £120, were recovered.