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Jail for North Yorkshire charity box thief


11:14am 14th February 2012
(Updated 11:45am 14th February 2012)

A man who stole charity boxes from premises in Lancashire, Cumbria and North Yorkshire has been jailed for four months.

Alexander Hewitt, 55, of no fixed abode, appeared at Lancaster Magistrates Court yesterday (Monday Feb13) charged with two counts of theft.

Hewitt stole a Mencap charity box from Harris Pantry, on Whitelund industrial estate, Morecambe, on November 22 last year and a North West Air Ambulance charity box from Scorton’s post office on December 10. He pleaded guilty to the charges and asked for another 31 offences across Lancashire, Cumbria and North Yorkshire to be taken into consideration.

Hewitt was arrested after CCTV images of him were released in a witness appeal and colleagues at North Yorkshire Police contacted Lancashire officers to make them aware of his identity. He was then seen by officers in Market Street, Lancaster, on February 9 and arrested.

PC Ben Hanley, Lancaster Police, said:

“Charities rely on the generous donations made by the public and to steal money from such good causes, depriving them of much needed funds, is quite despicable.”

Anyone with information about crime is asked to contact police on the new number 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. In an emergency always dial 999.

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