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Shoplifter blames theft on schizophrenic episode

A shoplifter has blamed his theft from a Castle Bromwich supermarket on a schizophrenic ‘episode’

Solihull Magistrates Court
Solihull Magistrates Court

A shoplifter has blamed his theft from a Castle Bromwich supermarket on a schizophrenic ‘episode.’

Melvyn Grayson pleaded guilty to stealing alcohol and groceries to an unknown value from Morrisons on March 16, when he appeared at Solihull Magistrates Court last week.

Malcolm Stoddart, prosecuting, said the 25-year-old, of Brownfield Road, Shard End, had been observed on CCTV, selecting items from the store before leaving without making any payment.

When arrested, he told officers he had stolen the goods to spite the store’s security guard who had been rude to him.

But Sarah Woulfe, defending, said: “He accepts committing the offence but has very little account of it.

“He took the items not only for the cash but also to spite the security guard who was very aggressive towards him.”

But Ms Woulfe said her client, who was recently sectioned after an attempted overdose, had serious mental health issues which were to blame for the theft.

“This offence is as a result of his mental health issues,” she added.

“He has had an episode. He is undiagnosed but his psychiatrist believes he is schizophrenic.

“He split up with his girlfriend of over 11 years and she is refusing to let him see his children.

“He did have an addiction to heroin and crack cocaine previously but had tested negative for those drugs on his arrest.

“Mr Grayson is very sorry to be back in court.

“He is making attempts to change his lifestyle.”

Grayson, who was already on a 12 month community order for previous shoplifting offences, was ordered to pay £20 compensation to Morrisons and court costs of £85.



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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