Thief stole £300 from hotel and assaulted shop worker
- Credit: Danielle Booden
A shoplifter, who went on a city-wide crime spree nabbed £300 from a hotel and attacked a shop worker in Prince of Wales Road, has been sentenced.
Paul James, 31, of Thorpe Road, Norwich, pleaded guilty on Thursday, May 12, at Norwich Magistrates Court to a series of more than 20 shoplifting offences in shops around Norwich, common assault, burglary, attempting to steal a bicycle and a public order offence.
He was sentenced to 12 months in prison.
The shoplifting offences include taking meat and alcohol worth £300 from a Tesco Store in Unthank Road on the afternoon of April 6.
A few days later, on April 11, James stole six boxes of Ferrero Rocher and six boxes of Guylian chocolates, valued at around £90 from Sainsbury’s in St Stephens Street and was caught on CCTV.
On April 14, James entered the Nike Factory Store at the Riverside Retail Park and filled a bag for life with £82.95 worth of stock, leaving without paying.
On the afternoon of April 30, James stole a sandwich from One Stop in Prince of Wales Road.
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The incident was seen by a store assistant who challenged James, who then turned and pushed the victim twice in the chest.
The store assistant reported the incident as a common assault.
On May 8, a shop worker at Tesco in Prince of Wales Road bumped into James as he was attempting to leave the store.
He then handed over a case containing six bottles of wine and said he was bringing them back.
James left the store but then came back in and started shouting in an aggressive and threatening way.
He was reported for a public order offence.
In the early hours of May 10, James was caught on CCTV committing a burglary at the Revado Hotel in Stracey Road.
He was identified in CCTV images as he entered the window of the restaurant and took the cashbox from the till containing around £300 in cash as well as an iPhone and a Samsung tablet.
James was also seen attempting to steal a bicycle as he tried to cut the locks at a property in Thorpe Road on May 10, at around 10pm.
Officers knew James was outstanding for a number of offences and they were given information of his location.
They arrested him on Rosary Road and subsequently searched his home where they recovered the Samsung tablet and phone, which were taken from the hotel.
Sergeant Chris Clay said: “Shoplifting is often perceived as a low-level offence but its economic impact and the impact on those people that work in retail cannot be underestimated.
"It remains one of the priorities for Norfolk police, particularly in the city centre.
"This sentence was the result of a significant amount of collaborative work by local neighbourhood and response officers and we hope this offers a measure of reassurance to our retail partners.”
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