Drink-driver stole four spirit bottles

NEWS: News.
NEWS: News.

A BOOZY motorist who stole four bottles of spirits has been banned from driving and fined.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Monday how Paul Merrick, 42, of Markham Road, Chesterfield, was stopped trying to leave Morrisons store in Staveley with the bottles and was also given a road-side breath test.

Becky Mahon, prosecuting, said: “He was seen removing security tags from four bottles of spirits and he was stopped trying to leave the store and the property was recovered. Staff became suspicious and saw his vehicle outside and he smelled of alcohol and a positive road-side breath test was carried out. He said he had gone to the store with the intention of stealing alcohol and he was going to sell the bottles to buy food for himself and his partner.”

Merrick, who has previous convictions for dishonesty, pleaded guilty to the theft committed in March and pleaded guilty to exceeding the legal drink-drive limit.

Defending solicitor Bob Bashforth told the court that Merrick had been drinking the night before the offences and that he admits stealing the drink because he and his partner were out for funds.

Mr Bashforth explained Merrick suffers with a spinal bleed and has a bad leg and had use of the Peugeot 107 vehicle through a mobility system. Magistrates banned Merrick from driving for 18 months with the offer of a four-month reduction if he does a driver course. He was also fined £182 and ordered to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £20.