A brass-necked thief who stole £183 of goods from Home Bargains claimed he was doing a social experiment to find out how much people would pay for stolen goods.
Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on August 28 how David McAllister, 35, of Cedar Avenue, Alfreton, had been stopped by a staff member after the theft at Home Bargains, at Alfreton, but fled the scene and he was later arrested by police.
Prosecuting solicitor Lynn Bickley said: “The circumstances are that on March 28, at 3pm, the defendant entered Home Bargains at Alfreton and filled a trolley full of goods and went outside and he was seen by a staff member who followed him and challenged him.
“He tried to walk away saying he was doing a social experiment to see what people will pay for stolen goods.”
Ms Bickley added that staff and a member of the public stayed with McAllister but the defendant left by the time police arrived but he was arrested later.
McAllister told police he was planning to approach people to see how much they would pay for the items he had taken.
The defendant, who has previous convictions, pleaded guilty to the theft of goods valued at £183.13.
Defence solicitor Stephen Cooper said the offence was committed only a short time after he was in court for a similar offence.
Mr Cooper added that McAllister had lapsed into drug abuse after his mum had been taken ill and it sent him off track and to pay for drugs he resorted to the theft.
Magistrates fined McAllister £40 and ordered him to pay a £30 victim surcharge and £85 costs.