‘Disabled’ shoplifter jailed

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Published: Friday 20th February 2015 by The News Editor

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A shoplifter who stole food while pretending to be disabled in scenes similar to the Andy and Lou sketch in TV comedy Little Britain has been jailed.

CCTV footage showed Leoni Clare in a wheelchair while she and her accomplice browsed the shelves at a Marks & Spencer store in Finham, Coventry.

The 28-year-old can be seen hiding a number of items in her rucksack before getting out of the wheelchair unaided to grab more products and conceal them in her coat.

The footage has echoes of the Little Britain sketch in which Andy Pipkin, played by Matt Lucas, feigns needing a wheelchair – unbeknown to his carer Lou Todd, played by David Walliams.

Police identified unemployed Clare, of Holbrooks in Coventry, after releasing the footage of the incident last month on social media. Her accomplice is still being sought.

Clare pleaded guilty today to theft counts in relation to the M&S incident and another at a pharmacy and was jailed for 14 weeks at Coventry Magistrates’ Court.

Pc Michael Harkin said: “Clare is a prolific shoplifter and this offence was particularly distasteful. I hope the custodial sentence will give her time to contemplate the seriousness of what she has done.”

Published: Friday 20th February 2015 by The News Editor

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