Coat theft pegs back ‘cold’ man

Scarborough Magistrates Court
Scarborough Magistrates Court

A SCARBOROUGH man felt the heat of the law after he was caught stealing a jacket from a bar during a cold walk home.

William Farrell, 61, took the coat from Quids Inn, in St Nicholas Street, after reaching under a security shutter.

Scarborough Magistrates’ Court heard unemployed Farrell, of Trafalgar Square, had been drinking in the town last month when he noticed the jacket hanging on a peg close to the door.

He was captured on CCTV lifting the coat off the peg before fleeing the scene.

Prosecuting, Katy Varlow said: “At around 1am a member of staff went to get his coat and noticed it was not there.

“CCTV was used and Farrell was identified as going behind the shutter and taking the jacket.

“It was fairly straightforward.”

Mitigating, Ian Brickman said Farrell acted in desperation as he was struggling to cope with the freezing temperatures.

He said: “He had been out on the evening to party in a town centre pub.

“It was a very cold night and well below freezing and he was walking home which is a reasonable distance.

“It was very much an opportunist thing, he walked past and then took it because he wanted to keep warm and he put it around his shoulders.

“He then walked home and retired to bed but later on there was a buzzing noise coming from the jacket which was when he realised there was property inside it.

“However, he did nothing to utilise that property.

“His intentions were to return it the following morning.

“He has spoken to the complainant and there is no animosity, the matter has been cleared up.”

Chairman of the bench Philip Catterall said: “It could be said you are a regular offender at court.

“This was an opportunist theft and the property was recovered but we believe that the offence is serious enough for a community order.”

Magistrates handed Farrell a three month curfew barring him from leaving his home between 7pm and 6am.