A SHOPLIFTER stole hundreds of pounds worth of alcohol in hauls spreading four months. 

Joshua Lewis Crichton, 33, failed to pay for bottles valued at nearly £800 from two Waitrose shops between May and August. 

On the afternoon of May 1, Crichton, of Lymington Road, Highcliffe, went into Southampton’s branch of Waitrose and helped himself to £147.50 worth of drink

He stole a bottle of Jack Daniel’s Triple Mash, one bottle of Jack Daniel’s Single Barrell, one bottle of Woodford Reserve Bourbon and two bottles of Jack Daniel’s. 

On August 16, he then helped himself to £649.46 worth of drink, including Hennessy Cognac, Laurent Perrier Brut, Laurent Perrier Rose Champagne, prosecco, wine and vodka, from Waitrose in Lymington. 

Bournemouth Echo: Waitrose in LymingtonWaitrose in Lymington

The following afternoon, Crichton visited the same store and stole another £124 worth of alcohol, including three bottles of Bushmills Whiskey and two bottles of Kraken Spiced Rum.  

This was recovered soon after by store security. 

Appearing at Southampton Magistrates’ Court on Friday, November 10, Crichton pleaded guilty to all three offences. 

He was ordered to pay compensation totalling the value he stole (£796.96) 

Sergeant Arron Wood, of the New Milton neighbourhood policing team, said: “This outcome was only possible because of some good work from our officers and teams. 

“Our offender management team linked in with probation to identify an address for Crichton. This was an address we were previously unaware of. 

“Our New Milton and Lymington officers then followed up by taking prompt action to ensure he was arrested and subsequently charged. 

“As I have previously said, retail crime in Hampshire is one of the force’s current priorities and we continue to support that by robustly dealing with shoplifters. 

“We will always deal with these matters seriously and will make all efforts to try and identify offenders if we don’t know who they are.”