Serial thief is narrowly spared from jailed after committing seven shop thefts

Chesterfield magistrates' court.
Chesterfield magistrates' court.
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A drug-troubled, prolific thief has been spared from being locked-up despite committing seven shoplifting offences.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Thursday, February 8, how Richard Arthur Hague, 32, of Broadgorse Close, Grangewood, Chesterfield, struck at Superdrug, Home Bargains, Next and Boots in Chesterfield.

Magistrates described Hague as a prolific shoplifter who stole to fund a drug habit.

Hague pleaded guilty to seven shop thefts from between November, 2017, and January 29, 2018.

The defendant admitted three thefts from Superdrug after stealing a Superdrug blow dry kit, a Remington blow dry kit and Babyliss hair straighteners.

He also admitted stealing two David Beckham gifts sets from Home Bargains during one raid, and two pairs of kids trousers and two kids hooded tops and one kids coat from Next during another raid.

The court heard how Hague also admitted striking at Boots twice when he stole three packs of razor blades each time.

Magistrates accepted Hague’s offending had crossed the custody-threshold for sentencing but opted to impose a suspended sentence to give him the opportunity to benefit from a Drug Rehabilitation Requirement and a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement.

They sentenced Hague to 12 weeks of custody suspended for 12 months with a Drug Rehabilitation Requirement for six months and a 22 day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement.

He was also ordered to pay £302.55 in compensation.

Magistrates came to their decision after Hague was described as a persistent shoplifter with a long history of acquisitive crime involving stealing to sell items on to fund a drug habit.