A serial shoplifter with more than 200 previous convictions on his record told magistrates he was ‘over the moon’ after they sent him to prison.
Robert Ian Thomas made the remark to Hartlepool Magistrates after they sentenced him to six months for thefts and breaching previous court orders.
Thomas, 47, formerly of Dunfries Road, Hartlepool, now of no fixed abode, has 220 previous convictions.
Prosecutor David Wood told the court Thomas stole 14 tins of deodorant, meat, and more tins of body spray, all from shops in Wynyard Road, Hartlepool.
The offences took place over four days earlier this month.
“On each occasion he was seen to put the items in his clothing and leave the store without paying,” said Mr Wood.
Thomas admitted three charges of theft, being in breach of a curfew order, and breaching his licence supervision provisions from a previous sentence.
Neil Taylor, defending, said in mitigation: “Mr Thomas is now homeless, which has led to him having problems with his benefits claim.
“Being homeless also means any form of community penalty is difficult, even if the probation service think it a viable option, which they do not.
“His life has gone down the sad spiral of drug taking and then stealing to get money to get more drugs.
“He is entirely realistic about how he can be dealt with today.”
The bench jailed Thomas for six months.
As he was led to the cells, he said: “I’m happy with that, I’m over the moon.”