Ballymena Court: Man attempting to steal £300 worth of clothing drops shopping basket after being chased by security guard

A MAN attempting to steal £300 worth of clothing discarded a shopping basket after being chased by a security guard, Ballymena Magistrates Court heard.

The defendant is Gavin James Lee Gildea (33), with an address listed as Linenhall Street in Ballymena, but now said to be living at Grange Walk in Ballyclare.

On March 19 last year the defendant went to TK Maxx in Bangor and brought a number of items into a changing room but when staff noticed an empty coat hanger they believed Gildea had put on a men’s polo shirt worth £17.

On April 10 last year was back in the Bangor TK Maxx when he filled a basket with eleven items of ladies, gents and children’s clothing and left the store without payment.

A prosecutor said:”A security guard did run after the defendant who then threw the basket of clothing and discarded it before running on. The security guard retrieved the basket and all items were recovered.”

Meanwhile, on June 5 in 2019 Gildea stole a pair of female earrings from Primark in Ballymena.

Police spoke to the defendant who had been detained by a security officer.

A pair of £1.50 earrings were recovered and after being searched a cannabis ‘joint’ worth £2 was found in the defendant’s wallet.

Defence solicitor Andrew Kinney said the defendant is now “settled” and works with an electricity firm where he is involved in sales and has been there since January.

The case was adjourned to October.

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