24th May 2018
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Heroin addict who stole cash after being let out of prison sent back down

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A heroin addict who admitted stealing £46 from an unlocked car just days after he was released from prison has been sent back down for almost 11 months.

John Gibson, 32, had been granted bail at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Friday after admitting breaching the peace at his home in the town’s Leslie Road the previous day.

But he was soon back in custody after taking the cash from the car at the Viking Bus Station on Saturday. Appearing in court again on Monday, he admitted the theft and committing the offence while on bail.

Defence solicitor Tommy Allan said Gibson, whose address was given as care of Thomas Allan Solicitors, North Ness, had made a “full and frank admission” to police. He had had no way of getting money and had succumbed to temptation.

Mr Allan said that although Gibson was aware of the “precariousness of his situation” and knew he would be taken into custody, he was keen to keep his appointment with the drugs project on Tuesday.

This he saw as his best chance of getting free of heroin. Mr Allan said that Gibson had a lot to lose should he be sent to back to prison. His relationship and home, of which he still had joint tenancy, were “on the line”.

The court had heard on Friday that Gibson, who was released from prison on 16th July after serving three months of a six month sentence, had found himself locked out of his home. He admitted shouting and swearing and uttering threats to his partner when she shouted out of a window.

Sheriff Graeme Napier said Gibson had an “appalling” record and should not even have been at liberty. He told Gibson he had “no option” but to send him back to prison to serve 80 days of his unspent sentence, plus four months for each of his recent offences, a total of nearly 11 months.

Gibson made an impassioned plea for his freedom but the sheriff lost patience, telling a security guard and police officer to “take him away”.

Meanwhile, breaching a community service order led to an appearance from custody at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Monday for Scott Henry.

Defence solicitor Tommy Allan said that Henry, 22, of Da Daal, West Burrafirth, had problems with substance abuse and had been taken to hospital with a drugs overdose on Saturday. Paramedics were surprised he had managed to pull through and were about to give up on him.

Mr Allan said that Henry had previously found it hard to motivate himself to do community service but had a different outlook since his “near miss” at the weekend.

Sheriff Graeme Napier continued the case until 26th August, ordering Henry to complete 12 hours of unpaid work by then.

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