Court spares thief from jail

A shoplifter who was fearing imprisonment has been spared a custodial sentence and given a chance to sort herself out.

Monday, 19th May 2014, 2:57 pm
Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Monday, May 19, how Jessica Lynam, 20, of Oak Bank Avenue, Old Whittington, Chesterfield, was captured on CCTV stealing from Tesco’s.

Prosecuting solicitor Becky Allsop said: “Lynam was seen picking up a burger in January and leaving without paying for it. She was identified from footage and she said she was having difficult financial times after a split from her partner and accepted stealing.”

The court heard that she was also seen taking items of groceries from Tesco and putting them in a bag without paying in April.”

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With regards to the second offence, she told police her brother was staying with her and she was having money problems. Lynam was also accused of breaching a conditional discharge for a previous offence of theft from a Spar, at Whittington Moor, Chesterfield.

Lynam pleaded guilty to the two thefts and accepted breaching the conditional discharge.

The probation service explained Lynam is dependent on benefits and she has suffered depression, has self-harmed and attempted suicide and she fears incarceration.

Defence solicitor Steve Brint said the two Tesco thefts were four months apart with goods valued at £11 and involved no planning. He added that despite having previous convictions from a time when she was experimenting with illicit substances she had stayed out of trouble for three years.

Magistrates sentenced Lynam to a 12 month community order with supervision, 40 hours of unpaid work with employment training. She was ordered to pay £6 compensation and a £60 victim surcharge.