A SHOPLIFTER who stole whisky and gin after he was given a suspended sentence for drink driving was told he could be jailed if he offends again.

Graham Comrie, 38, was given the warning after magistrates at Carlisle’s Rickergate court heard that he stole four bottles of whisky and a bottle alcohol free gin – together worth £68 – from an Asda store in the city on November 6.

He pleaded guilty to theft.

When he committed the offence, the court heard, he was two thirds of the way through an 18-month suspension period for a 16-week jail term, imposed in January when he admitted drink driving in Brampton.

On that occasion the defendant had almost three times the legally permitted amount of alcohol in his system.

The lead magistrates told the defendant, whose address was given as Ash Grove, Carlisle: “Whilst this was a relatively minor offence and everything was recovered, the fact remains that you were on a suspended sentence.

“You have still some months to go on that sentence.

“We have decided that because this is a dissimilar offence, we are not going to activate the suspended sentence.”

Instead, the magistrates imposed an £80 fine, £85 costs, and a £32 victim surcharge.

The magistrate told Comrie: “You have to remember that you are on a suspended sentence. If you come back before this court before that sentence expires, you might not be so lucky.”

As he left the dock of the court, Comrie said: “Thank you so much.”

The defendant’s January sentence included a 12-week curfew, with magistrates accepting that there was a realistic prospect of rehabilitation.

He committed the drink driving offence in Main Street, Brampton, in July of 2022.