Ex-Heroin Addict Steals Pensioner's Pills

PUBLISHED: 10:42 20 February 2009 | UPDATED: 10:46 04 May 2010

A HEARTLESS workman stole medication from a vulnerable pensioner when he went into her bungalow home to put up some shelves. Shane Witt went to the 68-year-old woman s sheltered home on the recommendation of her cleaner - and then helped himself to tablet

A HEARTLESS workman stole medication from a vulnerable pensioner when he went into her bungalow home to put up some shelves.

Shane Witt went to the 68-year-old woman's sheltered home on the recommendation of her cleaner - and then helped himself to tablets from her bedroom.

After Witt left the premises, the pensioner discovered a drawer from her bedroom cabinet on the bed, along with empty tablet boxes, Ely magistrates were told on Thursday.

Witt later gave some of the stolen tablets to his friend Stuart Growns, who swallowed 15 of them to help with his toothache, the court heard.

Witt, 33, of Tennyson Place, Ely, admitted stealing medication on February 6, and Growns, 37, of Downham Road, Ely, admitted handling stolen property.

The pensioner, who has mobility problems, had needed help with shelves and moving a television, said prosecutor Sally Rose.

Witt went to her Ely home, did some work, and then left the premises. He returned with Growns, and they stayed about 10 minutes.

"During most of that time the pensioner was kept talking in the lounge by Growns, and she noticed the other defendant moving from the bathroom to the bedroom," said Mrs Rose. "After they had gone, she found a drawer on her bed, and all her medication boxes were empty."

When Witt returned to the woman's home four days later, she called the emergency cord and the police were called.

Witt, a former heroin user, told police he had "given into temptation" when he took the tablets, and had shared them with Growns.

Growns told magistrates he had not distracted the woman while the tablets were stolen, Witt had taken them before he arrived.

Witt said he had taken tablets from the floor and from boxes, but had left some behind.

The court gave Growns a 12-month conditional discharge, and Witt is due to be sentenced on March 19.

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