Two friends tried to steal trolley full of groceries in Louth

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Two friends filled a shopping trolley with more than £200 worth of groceries and then attempted to push it out of the store without paying, magistrates at Skegness have heard.

Appearing separately, Kirsty Mitchell, 27, of Caroline Street, Alford and Martina Toplass, 23, of Crook Bank, Theddlethorpe, admitted stealing £239 worth of groceries from the Co-op in Northgate, Louth, on December 3.

Jim Clare, prosecuting, said the offence had been a ‘trolley dash’ when the two women had attempted to leave without paying but had been stopped by staff.

He said that Mitchell had stayed with the trolley and was detained, and Toplass initially ran away but returned later.

He said all the groceries had been recovered.

Asad Aziz, for Mitchell, said she was a lone parent and ‘deeply regretted’ what she had done.

He said there had been no plan to carry out the theft and that it had only become obvious to Mitchell, 
who had no previous convictions, when her friend and co-accused walked straight past the check-out.

Phillipa Chatterton, for Toplass, said she was a single parent with no previous convictions, whose benefits had all been suspended and she was short of money.

“To her credit, she did return to the store,” she said.

Magistrates imposed six month conditional discharges in both cases, with victim surchargesof £15 and £85 in costs.