A judge has urged a heroin user, who carried out a spate of shoplifting in Ballymena, to address her addiction issues as he suspended an eight months jail term for three years.
Kelly Louise McKee (27), whose address was listed as no fixed abode but previously had an address at Princes Street in Ballymena, appeared before the town’s Magistrates Court via video link from Hydebank Jail where she is a sentenced prisoner with a release date on June 14 in relation to previous offending.
She was before the court on Thursday in relation to incidents when she stole food, cleaning products and toys from shops in Ballymena including Robinson’s, Frys Road Spar, Smyths toy store, Grove Road Spar and the Vivo on the Cushendall Road.
The amount of items involved was £480.
The thefts were in the run up to Christmas and also on dates in January and April this year.
She also made off without paying a taxi in February and last September she stole goods worth £137 from Sainsbury’s in Ballymena.
Defence barrister Aaron Thompson said McKee had a “very chronic heroin addiction”.
He said he had been “doing this same plea” for the defendant for the past 15 years.
The court heard McKee was “bullied” in prison.