Prolific Portsmouth shoplifter sentenced for thefts across city stores
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A man who stole more than £2,700 worth of items from stores across Portsmouth has been sentenced to 20 months in prison.
Luke Rawson, 34, of Estella Road, appeared at Portsmouth Crown Court on Friday (10 February) where he was sentenced in connection with the below incidents:
On Wednesday 12 January 2022 Rawson entered the Co-op store on Tangier Road and stole various items including meat and dessert products worth approximately £50.
On Sunday 3 April 2022 Rawson entered the Co-op store on Fawcett Road and took various confectionary and chilled items worth approximately £130. Rawson entered the same store on Sunday 15 May and stole meat worth around £95.
On Sunday 3 July 2022 Rawson entered the Co-op store on Devonshire Avenue and stole £74 worth of confectionary.
On three occasions across Wednesday 3 August 2022, Saturday 13 August 2022 and Tuesday 20 September 2022, Rawson entered the Co-op store on Fawcett Road and stole £529 worth of meat and fish items.
On Friday 5 August 2022 Rawson stole £230 worth of clothing from the H&M store on Commercial Road.
On Friday 26 August 2022 and Friday 16 September 2022 Rawson entered the Savers store on Commercial Road and stole washing tablets worth £100.
On Friday 20 November 2022, Thursday 15 December 2022 and Friday 16 December 2022, Rawson entered the Savers store in the Bridge Shopping Centre and stole almost £600 worth of perfume, toiletries and Christmas gift sets across the three days.
On Monday 3 October 2022 Rawson took £178 worth of coffee from the Sainsbury’s store on Guildhall Walk.
On Saturday 8 October 2022 Rawson entered the Tesco store on Isambard Brunel Road and stole cleaning and beauty products worth £53.
On Sunday 23 October 2022 Rawson stole £128 worth of washing detergent from the Poundland store on Commercial Road.
On Saturday 19 November 2022 and Tuesday 22 November 2022 Rawson stole £330 worth of clothing from Matalan on Station Street and £250 worth of clothing from the H&M store on Commercial Road.
Rawson was also sentenced for an incident on Tuesday 1 December 2020 during which he was stopped in a van on Winchfield Crescent in Havant. The vehicle was stopped due to a faulty rear position light. Officers also noticed that the driver was weaving between lanes and that the vehicle was classed as uninsured. On stopping the van its tyres were also found to be defective.
Rawson tested positive for cocaine during a roadside drug wipe and on arrest he assaulted an officer by hitting them in the face. A knife was also located in his vehicle. He was charged with the following offences:
Possessing a knife blade/sharp pointed article in a public place
Assault by beating of an emergency worker
Driving a vehicle whilst unfit through drugs
Using a motor vehicle on a road/public place without third party insurance
Driving a motor vehicle otherwise than in accordance with a licence
Using a motor vehicle/trailer with tyre with any of the ply/cord exposed and with tyres with insufficient tread
Obstructing/resisting a constable in execution of duty.
Police Constable Mike Ashcroft of Portsmouth Police’s City Centre Unit said: “Rawson was one of the most prolific shoplifters in the city centre and we have worked hard and investigated thoroughly to bring all of these cases before the courts.
“We hope that this sentence demonstrates to businesses across Portsmouth how seriously we take shoplifting. Business owners and shop staff should not have to come to work and face harassment and criminal behaviour. We know that this type of offending also has an impact on shoppers and local residents who visit these stores. We hope that this sends a clear message to any shoplifters out there: continue to steal and you will also end up in court.
“The city centre team, alongside our colleagues from Neighbourhood Policing, High Harm, Response & Patrol and Criminal Investigations Department, will continue to work hard to make Portsmouth a safer and more pleasant place for residents, visitors and businesses.
“Please continue to report instances of shoplifting to us, and other crimes like antisocial behaviour, as they help us build a stronger case against prolific offenders.”