Serial thief asked shop staff to call the police after drunken glasses theft

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A THIEF branded a “one-man crimewave” has been jailed after trying to steal a pair of woman’s spectacles from an optician.

Homeless Brian Weir carried out the “ludicrous attempt” to take the designer glasses from the Specsaver store in Durham City while drunk.

Durham Crown Court was told how the 48-year-old, who was wearing a distinctive turquoise tracksuit, was seen by staff to walk in, put on the £125 Roxy glasses.

As he headed for the door he told staff to “call the police” and was then seen loitering in the area until officers arrived.

When interviewed about the incident, he made no comment to officers.

The court was told Weir has 114 convictions in the last 31 years for theft, with 70 of those committed in the last decade.

He admitted the theft on March 23, with the glasses recovered and returned to the shop’s bosses.

Lorraine Mustard, mitigating, said: “It was a stupid offence, which really ends there.

“He’s of no fixed abode and he has family in Scotland, who he remains in contact with, but he is as yet undecided what to do.

“Mr Weir wilfully accepts he is likely to receive a custodial sentence.”

She added he had last served a 16-week sentence in August for a theft from a shop.

Judge Peter Kelson QC referred to the defendant as a “one man crimewave”.

Sentencing Weir to six months, he said: “This was ludicrous in the extreme. You were drunk, went in to a shop, tried on lady’s glasses, and told staff to call the police.

“Your case is rather like one which falls into the category where you want to use the facilities of Her Majesty’s Prisons.

“You are what the authorities used to call a social pest.”

Twitter: @EchoEastDurham