Ilfracombe meat thief given one last chance by magistrates

North Devon Magistrates Court, Barnstaple

North Devon Magistrates Court, Barnstaple - Credit: Archant

The 26-year-old was already serving a community order when she stole more than £100 worth of meat from Co-Op in Ilfracombe.

A PROLIFIC shoplifter who stole more than £100 of meat to fund her heroin addiction has been given one last chance by magistrates.

Jennifer Chell, 26, of Ilfracombe, pleaded guilty to three counts of shoplifting and asked a fourth charge of the theft of a jar of coffee to be considered by the court on Friday.

One of the charges related to her stealing four joints of meat, and another to her stealing seven joints of gammon and one frying steak from the Co-Op in Ilfracombe.

She was caught in the act of CCTV and claimed she stole the meat to sell it to fund her addiction to drugs and alcohol.

The court heard Chell told police she was extremely remorseful and needed help with her addiction.

But prosecutor Mark Haddow told the court Chell was already serving a drug rehabilitation order issued by the court at the time of the offences.

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Magistrates revoked the outstanding community order and resentenced Chell to a 12 month community order with supervision and a drug rehabilitation requirement.

They also ordered her to participate in an educational training scheme.

John Steer-Fowler, chairman of the bench, said: “We are beginning to run out of options for you.

“We’re not going to make it more onerous than that as we wish to encourage you to take this opportunity and sort your life out. If you do reoffend I am afraid you will end up in prison.”

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