The Chronicle

Off-duty cop nabs shoplifter af­ter store steak theft

THIEF CAUGHT RED-HANDED

- By SARA NICHOL Re­porter sara.nichol@reach­plc.com @SaraNi­chol10 Crime · Incidents

A HAP­LESS thief tried to pocket pack­ets of steak from a su­per­mar­ket di­rectly in front of an off-duty po­lice of­fi­cer.

Daniel Whitelaw, who didn’t ap­pear in court in per­son as he was al­ready serv­ing a prison sen­tence for steal­ing lead from a pub, was caught in the act at a Sains­bury’s store in Tynemouth.

The 24-year-old, who has 33 theft of­fences on his record, was quickly de­tained by the eagle-eyed of­fi­cer and the meat, worth £29.20, was re­trieved.

He was due to be­fore North Ty­ne­side Mag­is­trates’ Court last week but couldn’t at­tend as he’d since been jailed. His so­lic­i­tor, Kash Khan, en­tered a guilty plea to one count of shop theft on his be­half.

Prose­cu­tor, Marc Atkins, said Whitelaw, of Sav­ile Street, in North Shields, had en­tered the Sains­bury’s store, on Broad­way, Tynemouth, on Oc­to­ber 17 this year.

He added: “Store staff no­tice the de­fen­dant putting mul­ti­ple pack­ets of steaks into a bag.

“It was also seen by an off­duty po­lice of­fi­cer, who fol­lowed the de­fen­dant out the store and de­tained him and re­trieved the items.

“The items were able to be re-sold, so there’s no ap­pli­ca­tion for com­pen­sa­tion.”

Mag­is­trates were told that Whitelaw was jailed on Oc­to­ber 26 af­ter steal­ing lead from the Mag­ne­sia Bank Pub, in North Shields, and breach­ing a sus­pended sen­tence,

which had been im­posed for sim­i­lar of­fend­ing ear­lier in the year.

Mr Khan said Whitelaw, who al­ready owes more than £4,000 to the courts, said the lat­est of­fence was “low level” and was not so­phis­ti­cated. He added: “He was al­ways go­ing to be ap­pre­hended. “His ben­e­fits had stopped at the time. He was not able to work. He had been work­ing but, at that time, had no in­come.

“The frus­tra­tion of not hav­ing ben­e­fits led him to steal liv­ing es­sen­tials.” Mag­is­trates gave Whitelaw a 12-month con­di­tional dis­charge and or­dered him to pay a £22 vic­tim sur­charge.

Store staff no­tice the de­fen­dant putting mul­ti­ple pack­ets of steaks into a bag

Marc Atkins

 ??  ?? Daniel Whitelaw leaves court
Daniel Whitelaw leaves court

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