Mansfield addict finds it “easier to take drug than go into rehab”

Mansfield Magistrates Court.
Mansfield Magistrates Court.

A Mansfield heroin addict who asked his shopkeeper aunt if he could take a free snack, then took it anyway when he was refused, has been fined, a court heard.

William Gamble made the request at Sherwood Stores on Southwell Road West, and then told his relative to f*** off and took the £1.49 snack, on July 22.

He returned the next day and stole a £1 bottle of pop, said prosecutor Robert Carr.

On August 2 he was arrested on Bath Street with a £75 beard trimmer he had stolen from Boots, on St Peter’s Retail Park.

He refused to come out of his cell to be interviewed, Mr Carr said, adding that Gamble was last before the courts in May, when he received a conditional discharge for a drugs appointment matter.

Rebecca Williams, mitigating, said: “He is a heroin addict and has been for a number of years. He did try going on a methadone script but he kept forgetting to collect it.

“He finds it easier to take the drug than to go into rehab. All his income goes on heroin.”

She said the probation service couldn’t recommend a drug rehabilitation requirement because of his attitude, even though he had turned up for most of his appointments, and was even early on some days.

She said not much could be done to help him “until he sees the light and accepts the help that’s been offered to him.”

Gamble, 32, of Smith Street, admitted three thefts when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Friday.

He was fined a total of £160 for the thefts and breaching the conditional discharge, and ordered to pay compensation to the store of £2.49.