Thief stole from Asda to fund dream of becoming a fishmonger

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A WOULD-be fishmonger stole groceries from a Wearside supermarket.

Steven Hutchinson stole £70 of shopping from Asda in The Galleries, Washington, on July 22.

A security guard saw the 42-year-old walk out of the shop without paying and called police.

Hutchinson, of Chester Street, Grasswell, Houghton, was identified from the shop’s CCTV and arrested.

He pleaded guilty to theft at Sunderland Magistrates’ Court.

Ian Haq, defending, said: “He explained to me that he did have sufficient funds on him to purchase the items, but he is on benefits and is saving up in advance of becoming self-employed, selling fish from North Yorkshire.

“He took the decision on this occasion to steal the items and put the money towards his fund.

“He is not someone who is troubling the courts on a weekly or even a monthly basis.”

Hutchinson apologised to the court and asked for a chance to “turn his life around”.

He was given an eight-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to pay an £80 victim surcharge.