Shoplifter who targeted Bulwell stores during spree handed suspended sentence

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A prolific shoplifter who has been tormenting stores in Bestwood and Bulwell has been handed a suspended jail sentence.

Levi Wildridge has been a real pest for shopworkers in both areas in recent weeks – targeting stores over and over again.

The Bestwood neighbourhood policing team have helped put a stop to this, however, after securing a criminal behaviour order (CBO) against him.

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Under the order, it is now a criminal offence for Wildridge to enter either of the Bestwood shops he targeted, and he will be hauled before the courts if he does.

Levi Wildridge was handed a suspended sentence. Photo: Nottinghamshire PoliceLevi Wildridge was handed a suspended sentence. Photo: Nottinghamshire Police
Levi Wildridge was handed a suspended sentence. Photo: Nottinghamshire Police

The 39-year-old pocketed more than £1,800 worth of stock in total during a spree that involved a dozen separate thefts from four stores.

Most of these offences took place at the Co-Op, in Beckhampton Road, Bestwood, which Wildridge targeted on eight different occasions.

Each of these thefts happened between 3 March and 11 April 2024, with Wildridge stealing from multiple other shops on some of the days too.

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The shoplifter struck at both the Co-Op in Beckhampton Road and the Co-Op in Arnold Road, Bestwood, on 21 March and 11 April.

He also assaulted a woman on March 21, while stealing £100 worth of items from a shop, in Hucknall Lane, Bulwell.

Wildridge’s final offence took place on April 20 and saw him swipe coffee and cleaning products from the shelves of another store in Highbury Road, Bulwell.

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He was caught soon afterwards and charged with 12 counts of shop theft and an assault, which he pleaded guilty to in court.

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Wildridge, of Heatherington Gardens, Top Valley, was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for 12 months, at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court on April 22.

He was also subjected to a two-year criminal behaviour order (CBO), banning him from even entering either of the Co-Op stores in Beckhampton Road and Arnold Road.

If he breaches the conditions of this order, Wildridge will be arrested, returned to court, and potentially put behind bars.

Sergeant Katie Taylor, of Bestwood’s neighbourhood policing team, said: “We’re delighted to have obtained this criminal behaviour order against Wildridge, who has persistently broken the law and stolen items from shops in our community.

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“By having this CBO in place, we know that, if Wildridge ignores this warning and targets these stores again, he will more than likely find himself behind bars.

“A lot of work went into securing this order, so we hope it helps provide some reassurance to local business owners and shows how seriously we take this offending.

“We do find that a lot of shoplifting offences are carried out by the same group of repeat offenders, so anything we can do to stop these individuals is undoubtedly a good thing.

“These thefts can have a real impact on local communities, which is why we conduct regular operations as a team to target thieves.

“We will continue to do this as a neighbourhood policing team and would urge anyone with information about shoplifting in their area to contact us on 101, so that we can take action.”