A SHOPWORKER was left covered in blood and needed to have her head glued back together after a thief bottled her at work.

George Talbott stuffed a pastry down his trousers and snatched bottles of alcohol before striking the worker over the head.

Prosecutor, Rob Griffiths, told Bournemouth Crown Court on June 21 that Charlene Sweet was working as a team leader in Co-op on Holdenhurst Road when the defendant attacked her.

(Image: Charlene Sweet,)

At 8.20am on June 29, 2023, Miss Sweet recognised the defendant as a regular shop lifter and saw him place a hot pastry in the waist band of his trousers.

She told him that he could keep the pastry and now had something to eat but that he needed to leave.

However, Talbott ignored her requests, placed his can of alcohol on the shop counter and proceeded to make his way to the drink aisle.

Miss Sweet called for a colleague on her headset and continued to ask him to leave the store but the defendant just snatched cider and vodka drinks from the shelf.

“He walked past the till with no attempts to pay,” said Mr Griffiths.

The staff members followed Talbott outside before a struggle broke out, with Miss Sweet attempting to recover the stock.

All of a sudden she felt an impact and ringing in her head before feeling light-headed and dizzy, said Mr Griffiths.

She returned to the office to sit down and felt the warmth on her head which made her begin to scream and shout for an ambulance.

Miss Sweet was taken to hospital where the 2cm wound had to be glued back together.

She said in a victim impact statement that she had to stop shoplifters before because she has been instructed to by her bosses.

Within days of being back at work Miss Sweet had to confront more shoplifters which induced shakes and anxiety. “He could have ruined my life that day,” said Miss Sweet.

She told the Echo that she has been able to forgive the defendant for his actions.

“I am grateful that I have moved on now.

“I really hope that George has learnt a lesson from this.”

Mitigating, Mark Florida-James, said Talbott is ashamed for the way he has behaved but that he is still young, claiming that men do not mature until 25 years old.

He added that he has ADHD and autism but is trying to combat his alcohol problem.

Mr Recorder Tait said: “You are a persistent thief and have issues with alcohol and controlled substances.

“You know what happens when you are under the influence, you go out thieving to fund your habit.

“Then hard-working ladies like Miss Sweet doing their job end up severely injuries because of you.

“The courts have a duty to protect hard working people like her from idiots like you.”

Talbott, 23 and of no fixed abode, was sentenced to 23 months in prison for wounding without intent.