Mansfield thief missed court date because he was up all night worrying

Mansfield Magistrates Court
Mansfield Magistrates Court

A Mansfield thief with an “abysmal record” missed a court date because he was up all night worrying and slept in until the afternoon, magistrates were told.

Wesley Smith had been due in court on Wednesday after he was caught stealing a pair of headphones, worth £35, from Tesco in Mansfield, on December 6.

Smith, 38, of Mapleton Drive, admitted theft when he appeared before magistrates in Mansfield the next day.

“He told police he wrapped foil around the security tag and intended to steal them,” said Robert Carr, prosecuting.

“He had no money for food and intended to sell them.”

The court heard Smith had a “lengthy record”, with 23 convictions for 66 offences. He was released from prison, in December 2013, after serving nine months for burglary.

Zahra Hussain, mitigating, said Smith had been out of trouble for three years but had recently split from his partner, and had been threatened with the loss of his home.

“He told me he needed money to buy food and also it was a cry for attention,” she said.

“He was stressed and found it difficult to sleep. When he did it was 6am and he then work up at 1pm.”

Smith, who had previously dabbled in heroin and was now on a prescribed substitute, went to court but a warrant for his arrest had been issued.

Chairman Dennis Banner said Smith’s record was “abysmal”, but added: “Because you have been out of trouble for four years we are going to give you a two-year conditional discharge.

“If you commit no more offences in the next two years you will hear no more about it.”

He was ordered to pay £85 costs and a £30 victim surcharge, which will be added to an outstanding court debt of £909.