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Sutton man stole four times from the same store

Mansfield Magistrates Court
Mansfield Magistrates Court

A mentally-ill Sutton man was facing eviction when he returned to the same store four times to steal booze in order to sell and buy food, a court heard.

Matthew Clarke was detained at B&M Bargains on March 17, after he took £17 of spiced rum, and CCTV showed him taking more than £25 of alcohol in separate raids on March 15, 10 and 4.

Rebecca Williams, mitigating, said he had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and needs an injection every two weeks.

“He had been served with an eviction notice,” she said. “He used his benefits to pay a drug debt. He stole the alcohol to pay for food.”

She said he has the help a support worker for three hours a week, but this had been deemed insufficient and it was hoped that he could move into supported accommodation.

He had also been referred to hospital to tackle his drug use.

Probation officer Cheryl Nisbet said: “He is still using a lot of drugs and misusing alcohol. It is not good for him - compounded with his mental health.

“He likes using drugs and he’s not interested in stopping them. He has not been in trouble since 2014.”

Clarke, 26, of Lammas Close, admitted four counts of theft when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Friday.

Magistrates said they were “sorry” to see him back in court.

He was given a six month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay £42 compensation.