Drug addict went on ‘theft spree’ and stole slippers and make-up from Boots in Northampton

Lewis Hope committed a total of five shoplifting offences in the space of six days.

Friday, 24th January 2020, 12:00 pm
Updated Friday, 24th January 2020, 12:01 pm

A man who is addicted to crack cocaine and heroin stole make-up and slippers from Boots and Now TV boxes from B&M.

Lewis Hope of Broughton Green Road, Northampton stole goods to the value of £136 from Boots in The Parade.

The 29-year-old then went on to steal cash from Expressions in Harborough Road and a number of Now TV boxes from B&M in Victoria Promenade on three separate occasions.

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Lewis Hope stole from B&M, Boots and Expressions in Northampton. Photo: Kirsty Edmonds/Google Maps.

Hope appeared at Northampton Magistrates Court on Thursday (January 23) where he pleaded guilty to the last two offences relating to B&M.

He had already appeared in court to plead guilty to the first three offences.

Prosecuting solicitor Stella Moses said: “In the shop theft at Boots, the defendant was seen going into the store. Him and another man took a number of items, making no attempts to pay.

“They were challenged by a security guard.

“All items were recovered.”

Lee Paul Roberts, of Euston Road, Northampton was sentenced for his part in the theft from Boots.

The 43-year-old received an £85 fine and was ordered to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £32.

Hope went on to re-offend while he was released on police bail for the first offence.

On January 5, he entered Expressions on Harborough Road and took £850.

Ms Moses added: “He was seen attending a building and leaving shortly after with a black sports bag.

“He walked away from the premises and officers attended the area.

“They found him behind the building. He was seen counting the cash with another man.

“He answered no comment in police interview and the items were recovered.”

On the same day, Hope also stole a number of Now TV boxes from B&M stores.

Hope had already appeared before the court to plead guilty to these offences. The case was adjourned to allow the probation service to prepare a report.

While waiting to be seen by the court again, Hope went onto commit two more offences on January 10.

Ms Moses added: “He went into B&M stores and took a number of Now TV boxes.

“They are £25 each and he made no attempt to pay.

“He then attempted to steal more later that day, but was stopped by store staff that time.”

The items stolen in the first offence on January 10, were not recovered.

A probation officer who completed a pre-sentence report about Hope, explained that he is dependent on crack cocaine and heroin.

He became addicted when a stranger suggested drugs to him after he lost his accommodation and his job as a catering manager.

Defence solicitor, Balraj Kalirai said: “As you have heard this is a case whereby the defendant has become addicted to drugs in a very short space of time and all the offences were committed in a short space of time.

“He was working last year but it was seasonal so he had no income when the work dried up.

“While that was happening he fell behind on rent payments and was evicted.

“He was homeless and fell into the company of bad people.

“As you have heard a stranger suggested drugs and he was in a very low place at the time so accepted.

“These offences were a wake up call to him and he booked an appointment with his GP to get help.”

Hope’s last conviction for theft was in April 2017 when he received a community order, which he has breached twice.

The Magistrates deliberated about Hope’s sentence for more than 20 minutes.

When they returned, chair of the bench, Ms Crafurd, said: “You went on a theft spree and this all took place in a short space of time.

“The fact you were on police bail and then court bail are all aggravating factors.

“These offences have passed the custody threshold.”

Ms Crafurd sentenced Hope to 26 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months, meaning if he does not re-offend within a year he will not have to face his prison term.

Passing sentencing Ms Crafurd said: “Now is your chance. You must grab it or else you are going to end up in prison Mr Hope.”

Hope was also ordered to complete six months of drug rehabilitation and ten rehabilitation activity requirement days, as well as paying £45 compensation to cover the costs of the items he stole from B&M that were not recovered.