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Serial thief attacked Sunderland shop workers as he tried to steal from stores

Christopher Robinson
Christopher Robinson

A serial thief who attacked shop workers while trying to steal from their stores has been put behind bars.

Christopher Robinson squeezed a female worker's neck when she stopped him stealing candles from a Card Factory in Pallion, Sunderland, and warned her "I will come back and get you, I know what time you are finished".

The 31-year-old shoplifter also lashed out at a Lidl worker with a blow to her leg from a bike and on a different day threw meat at another member of the shop's staff and "squared up" to a security guard, who he threw a punch at.

The worker who was hit with the bike said she now feels "scared" when it looks like trouble might start in her shop and told police she does not like to see thieves getting away with stealing but now feels more reluctant to intervene.

She added: "I go to work to do my job as a shop worker, I really should not have to feel this way."

Robinson, who has 250 criminal convictions on his record, has been jailed at Newcastle Crown Court after he admitted 25 offences which included common assault, commercial burglary, theft and attempted theft.

The court heard during his crime spree, between October last year and May this year, Robinson took what he could from a range of shops.

He broke into an Aldi store in the early hours of the morning and took two television and three hoovers, worth over £300.

During a visit to Poundstretcher , Robinson crept into a staff room and took a handbag containing purse and personal property as well as a car key.

He helped himself to DVD players from Asda, spirits from One Stop shops and the Co-op and took £174 worth of candles from Collectables.

Robinson pocketed socks in Matalan, alcohol from Morrisons, electronic goods from Sainsburys and even Champagne from Marks and Spencer.

Mr recorder Christopher Williams sentenced Robinson, of Aldershot Road, Sunderland, to 15 months behind bars.

The judge said the offences were "particularly unsavoury" and told Robinson: "The thefts from commercial premises are often accompanied by you assaulting or threatening staff, who really, simply, don't deserve it and deserve the protection of this court."

The court heard a £200-per-day crack cocaine habit was at the heart of Robinson's offending, which he has now started to address.