Thief with 188 previous convictions is jailed again

Pictured is Gary Appleton, 45, of Fairfield Road, Buxton, who has been jailed.

Pictured is Gary Appleton, 45, of Fairfield Road, Buxton, who has been jailed.

A thief with 188 previous convictions has been jailed for the second time this year after stealing vests from a Buxton store.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Tuesday, September 6, how Gary Appleton, 45, of Fairfield Road, Buxton, stole the tops from Marks and Spencer, at Spring Gardens.

Prosecuting solicitor John Cooper said: “He was carrying a bag and approached the clothing and he dropped the items and put them in the bag. Police attended his property and found the items. The store manager feared the store was being targeted by professional shoplifters and the defendant’s record has numerous theft matters.”

Appleton told police the vests belonged to his girlfriend but after he was shown CCTV he admitted stealing because he was due to go on holiday, according to Mr Cooper. The defendant pleaded guilty to the theft which happened on July 26.

Defence solicitor Annis Rowlands said Appleton’s “undoing” has been drugs and he has been using amphetamines. She added that he and his partner have also been caring for her ex-partner who is terminally ill.

The court heard how Appleton has 188 previous convictions including 86 related to theft and he was previously jailed in February. Deputy District Judge Derek French sentenced him to eight weeks’ custody. Appleton must pay £260 in costs, a victim surcharge and compensation.