Man admits stealing from sex shop

DAVID CLARKSON
Last updated 12:34 29/01/2013

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An alcoholic has admitted a series of shoplifting offences, including stealing underwear and a schoolgirl uniform.

Defence counsel Phillip Allan said it was accepted that Christopher John Francis Kennedy was "in the grips of alcohol dependence".

Kennedy, 43, pleaded guilty before Judge Jane Farish in the Christchurch District Court today and was remanded in custody for sentence on February 5.

The judge asked for a pre-sentence report, which could cover Kennedy's suitability for home detention if a suitable address became available.

But she believed a short-term of imprisonment was the only appropriate sentence.

Kennedy admitted charges of stealing from a shop on December 16, stealing alcohol twice on January 18, underwear on January 19, freeze-dried food from Smiths City in central Christchurch, and a schoolgirl uniform from the Peaches and Cream sex shop on January 21.

Allan said: "He has committed the offences either for the purpose of obtaining alcohol or while under the influence of alcohol."

Kennedy had received a suspended sentence for offending in Wellington, on December 7, but then came to Christchurch to get work.

Allan said that Kennedy arrived close to Christmas and was unable to find employment and "things spiralled downward". He became lonely and anxious, and resorted to offending.

He said Kennedy wanted to be released on bail pending sentencing so that he could protect the few possessions he had.

Judge Farish refused bail, telling Kennedy that he remained an extremely high risk of reoffending.

He had little support in Christchurch, and during his intensive-supervision sentence in Wellington last year he had maintained sobriety for a time before returning to drinking and offending.

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- The Press

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