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Thursday, 17 April 2014

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Cumbrian drug addict raided two shops in one week

A heroin addict who burgled two shops in a week has been spared jail.

Ben Wiggins, 22, of Brindlefield, Wigton, smashed the front window of the town’s Co-op Pharmacy on King Street and stole diazepam, other class C drugs and nicotine patches.

The raid happened at about 2.30am on March 1 this year and Wiggins, who spent about an hour in the premises, was seen on CCTV.

Prosecutor Tim Evans told Carlisle Crown Court that when Wiggins’ bedroom was searched by police the following evening, medication was found.

“He pretended he had collected it from the chemist,” said Mr Evans.

Wiggins’ father confirmed to police that his son was not at home in the early hours of the morning of March 1.

A week later, while he was on police bail, Wiggins broke into the Spar store, also on King Street, and stole alcohol – including Southern Comfort, Jack Daniels, Navy Rum and Baileys – valued at £177.

He initially denied burglary but later admitted breaking into both stores.

Mr Evans said the stores were “deliberately targeted” and that Wiggins was a heroin addict who also abused valium.

The court was told that Wiggins has “expressed remorse” for his behaviour and that he was “a different person when using illegal substances”.

He would like to pursue a career as a tree surgeon, the court heard.

The judge, Mr Justice Rabinder Singh, imposed a prison sentence of 12 months, suspended for a year.

He also imposed a supervision requirement of 12 months and ordered that Wiggins attend the Thinking Skills programme. He also imposed a six-month curfew from 7pm to 7am.

Wiggins was also told to pay compensation to the Co-op of £1,100.

Mr Singh said: “You need to escape the influence of drugs which have clearly played a part in your recent offending behaviour.”

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