Serial shoplifter repeatedly stole cosmetics from Boots in Hartlepool where she was banned

A serial female shoplifter stole thousands of pounds worth of cosmetics, clothes and booze from various Hartlepool stores.

Monday, 20th June 2022, 12:20 pm
Updated Monday, 20th June 2022, 12:20 pm

Nicola Masson, 41, wore a face mask as she repeatedly targeted Boots and other shops in Hartlepool over a six-month period, Teesside Crown Court heard.

She was already banned from Boots when she stole from it on five occasions between November last year and February of this year.

On each occasion she entered wearing a face mask or covering and placed cosmetics and fragrances into carrier bags or a shopping basket and left without paying.

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Next at Anchor Retail Park, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

She was challenged by shop staff who recognised her on a number of occasions.

On January 11, the prosecution said Masson stole more than £2,000 worth of cosmetics from Boots by taking off the items’ tags and putting them in her bags.

And on March 7, she scratched a shop assistant’s hand inside Hartlepool’s Next store, drawing blood, when the member of staff caught Masson putting clothes into bags.

She also stole gin and vodka from Morrisons supermarket and £175 worth of items from Poundland.

Masson, of Melrose Street, Hartlepool, admitted shoplifting and common assault.

Stephen Constantine, defending, disputed the value of some of the goods given by Boots. But the judge said it was over £1,000 at least.

The court heard Masson committed the thefts to pay off a loan shark debt.

The judge, Recorder Thomas Moran, said she was “highly motivated” to accept help to prevent her re-offending.

Masson, who spent time in prison on remand, was sentenced to eight months’ prison, which was suspended for 12 months, and given an 18-month community order.

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