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Saturday, 02 August 2014

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Barrow couple’s lives ‘crumbled’ because of heroin abuse

A COUPLE’S lives “crumbled” after they lost their jobs and became homeless heroin addicts, a court heard.

Carl John Platts, 31, opened up when he appeared before Furness Magistrates’ Court with partner Stephanie Leanne Simpkins, 28, on Tuesday.

They had been stealing hundreds of pounds worth of alcohol from supermarkets to sell on and feed their £50-a-day habit, the court was told.

The couple used to have a mortgage, but have now been homeless for more than five months.

Platts said they were “sofa surfing” at friends’ homes and were “relieved” to have been caught stealing – so they could escape an “out of control” cycle.

In a candid admission to district judge Gerald Chalk, Platts, who gave a bail address of Barnfield Lane, Barrow, said: “I could’ve got a solicitor today, but I think it would’ve been a waste of money.

“I don’t mean that disrespectfully, I can be totally honest with you.

“I’m embarrassed to be here today.

“I got out of prison in 2006 – went away as a 22-year-old – came out and sorted myself out, got a job and moved in with my partner.

“We were normal people not long ago with a mortgage, went on holiday every year and both worked. I was about to take an electrician’s course to better myself. But we both got made redundant in the same month and – I know it’s not an excuse – we ended up with my girlfriend going bankrupt and lost our flat.

“That’s when we got into heroin addiction and our lives have crumbled since then.”

Platts admitted five counts of alcohol theft totalling at least £507 between August 13 and September 28.

He also admitted the theft of four Radley purses, worth £240, from Murrays Pharmacy.

Simpkins admitted four counts of theft of alcohol, totalling £351.92, between September 25 and September 29.

One of the thefts was committed together.

Every penny they made went on heroin, the court heard.

Platts, who had been off heroin for 11 days, said: “Shoplifting was the least personal – I’m not saying it was victimless – crime we could do, because our habits got out of control. It got to the stage where every day we had to wake up and find £50 and we just couldn’t manage it any more.”

The case was adjourned until October 30.

Have your say

I hope people realise that Drink is just as bad as drugs, they can both leave devastation in there wake, not just for the those unfortunate to have use them, also but for there families & loved ones too! I wish the couple Well & hope they Can use this as good experience with which to learn a good life lesson? All the very best to you both !

Posted by Wally ! on 20 October 2012 at 20:06

What a shame, I dont think so. Life is about choices and this was the path they chose. It is not a victimless crime, they stole from shops so there is a victim. Also he had been to jail before, was that also for a "victimless crime". There are 1000`s being made redundent, but they do not choose to commit crime whether it is victimless or not. How about getting another job, or is that a rather radical choice?

Posted by legal eagle on 20 October 2012 at 13:34

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