POLICE in Sunderland are warning shoplifters as they name and shame offenders.
Known thieves are being dragged before the courts as part of a crackdown on shoplifters in the city.
Extra patrols are also being carried out in shopping areas and police are working with shop security staff to prevent crime.
Recent court appearances include:
•Ryan Morris, 18, of Emsworth Road in Carley Hill, appeared at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court on March 11 and March 18 for a variety of shoplifting offences. He was put on an electronically monitored curfew, and has to carry out 60 hours of unpaid work in the community. Morris has been arrested 12 times this year.
•Paul Keith Henderson, 33, of Arnold Street in Boldon Colliery in South Tyneside, was jailed for 26 weeks when he appeared at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court on February 21 for shop thefts in Sunderland where a 7-inch DVD player and meat were stolen. Henderson has committed shop thefts in both South Tyneside and Sunderland.
•Sara Copeland, 28, of Falmouth Road in Sunderland, was sentenced to 32 weeks, suspended for 12 months, on February 11 when she appeared at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court for shop thefts in Sunderland. She has been arrested four times this year.
She also received a 12-month supervision order, a drug rehabilitation order and is not able to enter any Shopwatch premises for three months.
Sunderland Area Command Acting Chief Inspector Paul Stewart said: “It’s important action is taken against shop thieves to ensure they are dealt with for their crimes and to raise awareness of who they are to prevent future offences from taking place.
“Thieves should be aware that if they are convicted for stealing from shops then their images will be released to the public and circulated amongst Shopwatch members.
“Shoplifting is a crime which impacts on the whole community - each theft is a loss which retailers must account for and this could result in price increases, or even job losses.
“It’s something which does have an impact on the wider community and we continue to do everything possible to identify those involved and put them before the courts. It’s important some of the more prolific thieves are dealt with to prevent them reoffending.
“I’d also like to advise those people who are not known to police but who make a spur of the moment bad decision to steal that they will end up with a criminal record which could impact on the rest of their lives.
“The public can rest assured that we continue to carry out operations to tackle thieves to ensure our shopping areas remain safe places to visit.”