Judge commends Creswell drug addict with 72 theft offences on her progress

A judge has commended a drug addict with 72 theft offences and 35 fraud offences for her progress after her last appearance in court for shoplifting.

District Judge Andrew Davison told Tracey Slater she was entitled to “celebrate” her compliance with a community order pending her sentence for two thefts worth more than £100.

Slater, 44, of Elmton Road, Creswell, admitted the shop thefts at a previous hearing however Judge Davison deferred her sentence until last week.

He told Slater - a long-term crack and heroin user: “Deferred sentences rarely work - when you leave here today you’re entitled to celebrate.

District Judge Andrew Davison told Tracey Slater she was entitled to “celebrate” her compliance

“Heroin and crack cocaine are dangerous drugs - the sooner you sort that out the better.”

Courts have the power to defer sentences in certain cases to monitor an offender’s conduct - and how well they can comply with a judge’s requirements - after conviction.

Slater’s sentence was deferred with the conditions that she comply with a previously-imposed community order while committing no further offences and continuing to engage with drug support workers.

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Georgia Collins, Slater’s solicitor, told Chesterfield Magistrates Court: “Miss Slater accepts her record is appalling - at the time of the offence she was struggling for money and she is remorseful.

“She wants to come away from her addiction - it started when she was 17 years old. She is diagnosed with PTSD over something which happened when she was 11 years old.”

Prosecutor Becky Allsop said prior to the deferred sentence Slater admitted stealing Red Bull, milk and washing detergent from the Co-op in Creswell on May 17 last year – however she was stopped on the way out of the store and all items were recovered.

She also pleaded guilty to pocketing items from Tesco in Clowne worth over £80 on October 7.

Ms Allsop said on that occasion Slater had taken multiple items from the shelves without paying but she was stopped by staff and the property was recovered.

Slater was handed a 12-month community order with 10 rehabilitation activity days, a drug rehabilitation requirement, £85 court costs and a £95 victim surcharge.

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