Judge commends woman who tackled Rastrick beer thief

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A woman who tackled a shoplifter as he stole cans of beer from a Halifax store has been commended by a judge.

Recorder Kate Tulk today (Monday) said that Jade Drinnan should receive £250 in compensation from 37-year-old Christopher Stone after she suffered a cut to her left ear and bruising to her body as she tried to stop him leaving the Union Street newsagents last month.

Bradford Crown Court heard that Miss Drinnan had gone into the store at around tea-time on January 13 as Brighouse man Stone was trying to steal two cans of beer which he had taken from a fridge.

Recorder Tulk was shown CCTV footage of the incident which captured Stone grabbing Miss Drinnan by the lapels of her coat and throwing her onto the floor .

Prosecutor John Topham said Miss Drinnan held onto Stone’s leg causing him to fall over a display unit in the shop.

Stone, of Scholey Road, Rastrick, Brighouse, eventually managed to flee the store, but he was arrested a few days later.

The court heard that back in November Stone had gone into the same store and stole two cans of beer worth £4.

Today he was sentenced to 11 months in jail, suspended for 18 months, after he admitted two offences of theft and one of affray.

Although Stone had served prison sentences in the past his lawyer Paul Manning said he was not an habitually violent offender.

After his arrest Stone said he couldn’t remember anything about incident in the shop, but he accepted that he was the man shown on the CCTV footage.

The court heard that Stone had a drink problem and Mr Manning said he had gone into the shop to get more alcohol.

Mr Manning said the father-of-one was thoroughly ashamed of the way he behaved and wanted to apologise for it.

Recorder Tulk said Stone would be subject to a two-year restraining order which bans him from going into the Union Street newsagents and he will also have to comply with a four-month electronically-monitored curfew at his home between the hours of 8pm and 6am.

The judge said Miss Drinnan had tried to intervene in an extremely public-spirited fashion to try and prevent a crime from being committed and she is to be commended for her actions.

Recorder Tulk described Stone as “a thief rather than a violent man” and said she had decided to suspend the prison term having taken account of his remorse, the time he had spent on remand and the fact that she wanted him to make some recompense to Miss Drinnan for the way that he had treated her.