Drank wine in shop two days in a row

Two days running a 22-year-old man went into a Tescos store, took a bottle of wine and drank it in the toilets before leaving.

Wednesday, 11th November 2015, 11:00 am

He was Jordan Topping, Church View Villas, Gilford, and he appeared last Friday at Craigavon Magistrates Court by way of videolink from Maghaberry prison.

For stealing clothing from Peacocks in Portadown on July 1 this year and the theft of a sleeping bag from Asda on April 20 he was sentenced to four months in prison while concurrent three months terms were imposed for the theft of a bottle of soft drink from Sainsbury’s and failing to answer bail.

He was also sentenced to concurrent five month terms for stealing bottles of wine from Tescos in Portadown on August 6 and August 7.

All the sentences were suspended for two years.

The court heard that on April 20 Topping went into Asda in Portadown and took a sleeping bag valued at £38. He left without paying but was identified on CCTV.

On June 3 at Sainsbury’s he took a bottle of Fanta lemon, drank from it and put in his pocket before leaving. Again he was identified on CCTV.

On July 1 at Peacocks in Portadown he took items into the changing rooms and it was discovered that his old items and tags from the stolen clothes, worth £31, were found in the rooms.

Topping was again identified on CCTV as the person who on two occasions took a bottle of wine in Tescos in Portadown before going into the toilet and drinking them.

The cases against him had been adjourned so that a pre-sentence report could be obtained.

A solicitor representing Topping said it was clear that alcohol was the root of his problems.

She explained that between January and March he had undertaken a detox programme and after being in England when he returned got back into a familiar pattern.

The solicitor said there was a litany of offences and Topping accepted he was causing havoc and being a nuisance.

She added that he had been in custody since August 22 and asked the court to consider leaving something hanging over his head as a deterrent not to get into trouble.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said there was some attraction in leaving something hanging over Topping in a bid to stamp out this behaviour.