Suspended prison term for woman who stole from Sainsbury’s

South East Magistrates' Court in Ipswich.

South East Magistrates' Court in Ipswich. - Credit: Archant

A shoplifter who stole goods worth £325 from Sainsbury's at Warren Heath, near Ipswich, has been given a suspended prison term.

Amy Brewis, of Church Road, Heveningham, near Halesworth, had six previous convictions for 22 offences, Ipswich magistrates heard.

The 36-year-old pleaded guilty to theft when she appeared before South East Magistrates' court.

The offence occurred on October 24 last year. Brewis left the store without paying for the goods and was caught while unloading them into the boot of a car.

Prosecutor Wayne Ablitt said her most recent previous conviction was at North Essex Magistrates' Court on August 25 last year for making a false representation. She subsequently received a two-year prison sentence at Chelmsford Crown Court.

In February last year she was given a community order by Norwich magistrates for making off without payment.

Brewis was also given a community order in 2013 for benefit fraud.

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Brewis, representing herself, said: 'My sentence at the end of last year was a real turning point for me. I had some issues which I had failed to deal with.

'At the time it was probably the worst thing that could happen for my family.

'I have made a number of changes to my life.

'All I can say is that part of my life is over.

'My understanding that I have from the victims from my past offences weighs very heavily on my shoulders.'

Brewis said that the Sainsbury's theft was a bad decision which she could not take back.

However, she asked the magistrates to look at the changes she had made to her life over the past couple of months, since she had been released from prison on June 23.

Brewis remains on licence until November next year.

She added: 'Coming out of prison is a huge adjustment. Probably more of an adjustment than you realise.'

Brewis told the court she was 'just trying to rebuild her family'.

She was sentenced to six weeks' imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, when she appeared before South East Magistrates' Court earlier this week.

Brewis must also pay £85 costs and £80 to the victims' fund.

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