Depressed shoplifter is given a chance by magistrates

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

A depressed shoplifter who has been struggling to get her son free from heroin has been given a chance by magistrates after she stole groceries.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard today, Tuesday, June 14, how Tracy Marie Freestone, 49, of Dimple Road, Matlock, was spotted by security guards at Lidl, in Chesterfield, transferring goods from her trolley into her bag and not paying for them.

Prosecuting solicitor Becky Allsop said: “She was observed by a security guard transferring items from her trolley into a bag and she paid for certain items in the trolley but not those in her bag.

“She said she was having health problems and problems at home and was depressed.”

Freestone pleaded guilty to the theft of goods valued at £27.57 after the offence on May 20.

Defence solicitor Felicity Coats said: “She has emotional issues in her family that are creating difficulties. She has a son in rehabilitation with heroin addiction.”

Mrs Coats explained that Freestone has also put her son’s financial debt on her credit card so he can go into rehabilitation.

She added that Freestone suffers with a degenerative back condition and her offence is linked to the defendant’s depression and anxiety and Freestone has written a letter of apology to Lidl and she is seeking counselling.

Magistrates sentenced Freestone to a six-month conditional discharge but warned that if she re-offends she will be re-sentenced for this theft alongside any new crime.

Freestone was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £20 victim surcharge.