Stevenage man jailed after two-week shoplifting spree

Police are appealing for help to trace a cyclist who may have witnessed an attempted robbery in Stev

Police are appealing for help to trace a cyclist who may have witnessed an attempted robbery in Stevenage on Tuesday. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

A Stevenage man has been jailed for a year after pleading guilty to a two-week shoplifiting spree in the town.

Paul Murphy, 34, of Broadwater Crescent in Stevenage, appeared at Hatfield Remand Court on Friday, April 5, where he admitted to 12 charges of theft – all of which took place between March 20 and April 4.

On March 20, Murphy stole meat from the Co-op in Broadwater Crescent.

A day later, on March 21, he stole coffee, chilled food and household items from the One Stop Community Store in the same area.

Murphy returned to the Co-op the following day and stole two boxes of wine.

On March 23, he took 10 sirloin steaks and other meat products from the Co-op, before stealing bacon and sausages from the One Stop store.

He targeted Boots on the Roaring Meg Retail Park next, stealing an epilator on March 27, and returning the next day to take a number of fragrant gift sets.

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On April 1 he stole five bottles of washing up liquid from Home Bargains on the Monkswood Retail Park, before committing his final theft on April 4, stealing alcohol from Sainsbury’s in Magpie Crescent.

Murphy also pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation, for using a stolen card to make two £30 transactions on March 17, and possession of a Stanley knife on March 24 – which was found during a search following his arrest.

He was also ordered to pay £1,043.90 in compensation.

PC Ben Swapp, investigating, said: “Murphy is a prolific shoplifter, who targeted the same stores repeatedly.

“I hope that news of his jail sentence will reassure local businesses that positive action has been taken.”

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