Drunk Norwich woman sat in middle of road

A former heroin addict was arrested for being drunk and disorderly after sitting in the middle of a road and shouting and swearing at passing cars, a court has heard.

Emma McDermid, 33, appeared at Norwich Magistrates' Court on Thursday where she pleaded guilty to five offences of theft, one of being drunk and disorderly in a public place, failing to surrender to court bail and a further charge of commission of an offence while subject to a conditional discharge.

Lisa Mayne, prosecuting, said McDermid, of Bargate Court, off Barrack Street, Norwich, was arrested on February 10 for being drunk and disorderly in a public place, which was Middleton's Lane, Hellesdon at about 12.50am.

She said officers had already attended Nursery Close, Hellesdon, about 40 minutes earlier and had told McDermid, who was under the influence of alcohol, to calm down because she was shouting and attracting attention. The court heard officers then 'found the defendant sitting in the road' with cars coming along. Mrs Mayne said that she refused to move and was shouting and swearing at the people coming past her.

Four of the thefts were from shops in Red Lion Street, Aylsham, on December 14 last year when 'it would appear she had gone from one shop to another to another' stealing items of clothing. She was arrested, but failed to surrender to bail when she did not appear at North Norfolk Magistrates' Court in Cromer on January 6. The fifth offence of theft happened in Aylsham on January 12 when she stole four cans of Co-op super strength lager to the value of �5.65.

Richard Bayliss, mitigating, said that McDermid had beaten a 15-year heroin addiction last November, but replaced her 'heroin misuse with alcohol misuse which had caused these offences'.

He said she was a mother of two children, 10 and four, who are staying with her mother. Mr Bayliss said she was upset her mother would not let her have the children and was 'disappointed' with herself for taking the items, which were to be Christmas presents, as she had the money to pay for them.

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The court heard that she now has a new address, is in a new relationship and is 'striving to make efforts to get away from the offending history she has'.

McDermid was sentenced to a community order with 12 months supervision and a medium-intensity alcohol requirement. She was ordered to pay Co-op �5.65 compensation and �50 costs.