Addict spared jail in ‘chance of a lifetime’
A DRUG addict who stole two handbags from a hairdressing salon has walked free from court after being given the “chance of a lifetime”.
Anthony Allan was told by the judge that he could send him to jail for a very long time.
“If I did that, no doubt you would come out and do exactly the same again,” he said.
Allan, of Steeds Lane, Kingsnorth, Ashford, was given a 51week prison sentence suspended for two years and a drug rehabilitation and supervision order.
Maidstone Crown Court heard that the 28-year-old broke into the Mayfair hairdresser’s in Church Road, Willesborough, on November 10, last year.
Laura Thompson was going to the staff room when she saw Allan leaving by a fire escape with two bags, one of which was hers.
Jo Cope, prosecuting, said that Allan fell over and dropped his mobile phone. He escaped on a bike.
Police arrived and had the phone in their possession when it rang. The caller asked for Ant. An officer queried the name and the caller replied: “Anthony Allan.”
Miss Cope said that Laura Thompson lost £90, but most of the property in the bags was recovered.
Allan at first denied being responsible but later pleaded guilty to the offence.
He was on bail for another matter when he committed the burglary.
Judge Philip Statman described Allan as a drug addict who committed burglaries and sold the stolen property to support his habit.
He told him: “This was a mean offence.
“You went into a place where you had no need to have been and stole items that were of considerable consequence to the losers.”
“I am absolutely sure the reason you did it was in order to get the next £10 bag to stick up your nose.”
The judge said that he was giving Allan the chance of a lifetime because he wanted him to address his addiction.
Allan, he said, would be subject to drug rehabilitation for a year and supervision for 18 months.
He must return to court every month for a private review.
“If you break the order by committing other offences or do not comply, you will receive a period of imprisonment,” said the judge.
He added: “I hope at the conclusion of this you will have a much better life to look forward to, but the choice is yours.
“It is not a case of letting me down.
“I am trying to achieve a new way of life. Good luck. Don’t go back on the streets and use [drugs].”