Stole items to feed her drugs habit

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While on drugs or to feed her drug habit a 29-year-old woman carried out a series of shoplifting offences, Craigavon Magistrates Court heard last Friday.

Modesta Dapke, Victoria Terrace, Portadown, appeared in the court by way of videolink and admitted a series of offences.

She pleaded guilty to the theft of items valued at £14.17 from Home Bargains in Portadown on May 23 this year and stealing clothing worth £64.99 from DV8 on July 5 last year.

Dapke also admitted the theft of hair products worth £61.98 from Sally’s Hair and Beauty in Bangor on March 10 and attempting to steal alcohol valued at £386 belonging to Asda in Omagh on March 12 this year.

The court heard that on May 23 last year police were notified of a shoplifter at Home Bargains where the defendant was seen putting items into a handbag.

At the till she paid for two items and left without paying for the goods in her handbag.

On July 5 last year at DV8 she was seen on CCTV taking clothing. When stopped by security she said: “If I give you back the things will you not contact the police.”

On March 10 last year Dapke was monitored by security in the Flagship shopping centre in Bangor.

When she was stopped she had items from Sally’s Hair and Beauty and she produced false identification to police. She also had a foil lined bag which was seized by police.

A solicitor representing the defendant said she was genuinely remorseful for what she had done and asked the court to give her credit for pleading guilty.

He added that the offending showed someone who was suffering from drug addiction and it was this which underpinned all her offending. The thefts were carried out when she was on drugs or to feed her habit.

The solicitor said she knew the only way to resolve her offending was to deal with her addiction issue and hopefully the penny had now dropped. He added that her mother was coming over from Lithuania to provide some support and hopefully her attitude would change.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said that if this had been a single offence if might be possible to consider an alternative to immediate custody.

However, he added, the offending had continued unabated up until March this year.

For each of the offences he sentenced Dapke to four months in prison with the sentences to run concurrently. He also activated a four month suspended sentence to run consecutively making a total of eight months in custody.