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'I have a needle, I will stab you': Drama as police use batons to disarm Norfolk shoplifter

PUBLISHED: 06:42 14 February 2019 | UPDATED: 11:25 14 February 2019

Rebecca Wilson was jailed for 16 months for possession of a bladed article, theft from shops and threatening behaviour. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary

Rebecca Wilson was jailed for 16 months for possession of a bladed article, theft from shops and threatening behaviour. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary

Archant

A shoplifter was wrestled to the ground by baton-wielding police after she threatened to stab an officer with a hypodermic syringe, a court heard.

Drug user Rebecca Wilson, 23, was wanted for shoplifting offences and threatening security staff at Aldi in King’s Lynn, but when officers went to arrest her, she told them she would stab them with a needle if they came near her, Norwich Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Jude Durr said Wilson pulled out a syringe and held it above her head as one of them approached and she said: “I have got a needle. I will stab you if you come near me.”

He said officers treated her as a “real threat” and had to draw their batons and use Pava, an incapacitant spray, to arrest her.

Mr Durr said; “She was taken to the floor and the syringe fell out of her grasp and they arrested her.”

He said that she continued to be abusive and was shouting and swearing.

He said Wilson had a long history of thefts from shops and had 41 convictions for 97 offences. He said she was homeless and using drugs at the time.

Wilson, of no fixed address, who appeared via video link from Peterborough Prison, admitted threatening behaviour, having a bladed article in a public place on January 10, and a string of thefts from shops.

Jailing her for 16 months, Judge Andrew Shaw said it must have been “absolutely petrifying” for police officers to be threatened and told the needle was going to be used to stab them and said there was no way they would know if the needle was dirty or not.

He said: “Put yourself in the place of these police officers - you, wild-eyed in a car park with a needle raised above your shoulder threatening to stab them.”

However he accepted Wilson needed help with her drug addiction and hoped she would get that in custody.

Duncan O’Donnell, for Wilson, said she was only 23 and her heroin addiction lay behind her offending.

He said there were signs she had reached a turning point in her life.

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