A MAN got drunk shortly after being released from a 17-year prison term, went to a Christchurch pub and was abusive to staff and customers before pouring himself a pint and taking bottles of beer.

Sam Rothchilds, 48, asked bar staff if they wanted to have sex with him, slapped a customer on the back of the head and stole bottles of cider and beer from behind the bar.

He pleaded guilty to theft and two counts of using abusive words to cause harassment and appeared at Bournemouth Crown Court for sentencing on Thursday, May 19.

Prosecuting, Stuart Ellacott told the court Rothchilds, of HM Prison Albany, went into the Railway Hotel Pub in Christchurch at around 6pm on August 8, 2021.

The defendant approached the bar and told the female member of staff she had a “nice bum” before making a second obscene comment.

He then became abusive to other customers in the pub, offering to fight them and used racial slurs to describe a staff member.

Rothchilds then went behind the bar and stole three bottles of Bulmer’s cider, three bottles of Budweiser and poured himself a pint of Fosters.

A customer and her fiancé were then approached by Rothchilds and asked if he would leave them alone.

The defendant remained with them, called the fiancé a “four-eyed *******” and slapped him on the back of head before making another obscene comment. 

Police eventually attended three hours later when Rothchilds ran down a street and was detained.

Mr Ellacott said it seemed the defendant was most concerned about his phone he dropped while running.

Rothchilds had 16 convictions from 41 offences, most recently given an indeterminate sentence of imprisonment for public protection (IPP) for a grievous bodily harm offence in 2005.

The IPP meant Rothchilds could only be released from prison if the parole board thought he wasn’t a danger to the public, and as a result served 17 years for an initial three-year sentence.

Mitigating, Tom Evans said his client was “remorseful and embarrassed” of his actions.

He said he visited his mother’s grave for the first time and then decided to drink. He had been in custody since the offence because of the IPP and wanted to apologise to the victims.

Addressing the court, Rothchilds said: “I was extremely upset that day. It was the first time I had drunk in 17 years.

“I am terribly embarrassed by how I behaved, if I could take it back I would.”

Judge Jonathan Fuller sentenced Rothchilds to two months imprisonment for the theft, and four months each for the abusive behaviour, to be served concurrently. However, he won’t be able to be released until the parole board deem it appropriate.