West Norfolk man commits 101st theft after seven-year break

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A 48-year-old man from Lynn committed his 101st theft by stealing walkie-talkie parts from a store on the town’s Hardwick Retail Park.

Christopher Joynson, of North Everard Street, pleaded guilty at Lynn Magistrates’ Court on Monday to stealing a radio aerial, a lanyard and an instruction manual for a Mitex Walkie Talkie, of an unknown value, from Maplin.

The court heard that on July 28 the defendant entered the store with the intention to take and sell on items to cover costs of a present for his mother.

Joynson, who has previously faced 100 charges of theft, tipped the contents of a walkie-talkie set into a shopping bag, and attempted to return the items to a shelf after a staff member “caught him” stealing.

Fergus Harold, prosecuting, said a staff member alerted the police to the theft and banned Joynson from the store.

Joynson, who had not appeared before the courts for seven years prior to this case, was caught, by police, with a radio aerial, a lanyard and an instruction manual still in his shopping bag.

Ruth Johnson, mitigating, said: “I have not seen Mr Joynson for seven to eight years.

“He has changed quite a lot since I last saw him and I would not have recognised him if it wasn’t for his height.

“He has changed dramatically since I last saw him in his attitude and demeanor.

“He is no longer using heroin and he does not hang around the same people as he used to.

“He has managed to stay drug-free for seven years and he is down to 30 millilitres of methadone and he is working well with the Norfolk Recovery Partnership.

“He made a bad, split-second decision when money was tight to steal, but then previous education set in and he put the items back on a shelf.

“He recognised that he had done so well. He wants to get back to building on those seven years.”

Joynson was given an 18-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay a £20 surcharge.