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Thursday, 02 October 2014

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Drug abuse mum forged doctor's signature to get tablets

A young mum prosecuted for stealing her doctor’s blank prescription forms to get tranquillisers has been abusing drugs since she was 13.

A crown court judge heard how Workington woman Rebecca Williams, 23, who already has convictions for 14 offences, began dabbling in drugs a decade ago when she was still a schoolgirl.

She was back in court after she abused the trust of a doctor at Workington Community Hospital to steal blank prescriptions.

She later forged the doctor’s signature to prescribe herself diazepam tablets which she sold for £10.

Williams, of West View Walk, admitted theft, supplying the class C tranquilliser and possessing an article – the forged prescription – for use in a fraudulent transaction.

Prosecutor Clare Thomas told the court how Williams visited the doctor in the town’s Park Lane Hospital at 6pm on June 19 complaining that she was suffering pains in her knee.

“While she was in the consulting room, the doctor had to leave the room for three minutes, during which time the defendant stole pages from his blank prescription pad that was on his desk,” Miss Thomas said.

A short time later, Williams wrote a prescription for 50 10mg diazepam tablets and took it to an Asda pharmacy.

But the pharmacist was suspicious and dispensed just 15 of the pills, telling Williams to return the next day for the remainder. When the defendant left, the pharmacist rang the hospital, triggering a complaint to the police.

Meanwhile, Williams sold the pills she had been given shortly after getting them.

She later told police that she preferred having money in her pocket to being able to sleep with the help of the pills.

Alison Whalley, for Williams, conceded the defendant’s record was “unenviable”, saying: “She’s taken drugs for 10 years, having fallen in with the wrong crowd since she was 13, taking predominantly Valium.”

The barrister said Williams had also dabbled in other drugs, including heroin.

A mother of two – one aged 11 months and the other two – Williams was being supported by her mother and stepfather and she had worked with professionals while in custody to become drug free.

Miss Whalley said that her client’s time in custody since her arrest was her first time in jail, and it came as a “short, sharp shock”.

The barrister added: “She is very remorseful and wants to remain drug free on her release.”

Recorder John Corless accepted that Williams was genuinely sorry and imposed a six-month jail term, but he suspended it for two years.

He ruled that she will be supervised by the Probation Service for a year and attend a drug awareness course.

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