Former barman stole money while working at riverside pub

Shane Stocker admitted taking money while working at the Bristol Arms

The Bristol Arms pub in Shotley Gate - Credit: Google Maps

A former barman who stole money while working at a popular riverside pub in Suffolk has been fined and ordered to pay compensation. 

Magistrates heard how Shane Stocker, 36, was working behind the bar at the Bristol Arms pub, in Shotley Gate, when the landlord began to notice money going missing. 

The landlord, Shane Rolin, started his own investigations and was made aware by other customers of reports regarding Stocker, Suffolk Magistrates' Court heard on Monday. 

Mr Rolin then installed covert CCTV cameras at the premises, which covered the till area.

Stocker was seen eight times on CCTV rolling up notes in his hand and putting them in his pocket when dealing with customers, the court heard. 

Magistrates heard that Mr Rolin estimated the loss to be thousands of pounds.

But on the day his trial was due to take place, Stocker pleaded guilty to theft by employee on the basis that no more than £100 was stolen between November 23 and November 30, 2018. 

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David Allan, mitigating, told magistrates the offence was out of character for Stocker, of Hossack Road, Ipswich.

"One feels a great deal of sympathy for any employer who has property, whether it be cash or otherwise, taken by an employee," he said. 

"There is, of course, an element of breach of trust and that aggravates matters and makes it more serious. 

"In this particular case of course, the employer believes that matters were more widespread than the prosecution have charged.

"That may or may not be right, we simply do not know.

"But you can only deal with what has been charged and the defendant has pleaded guilty to.

"As the defendant says in his basis of plea, this was a short period when he was going through financial difficulties.

"That is absolutely no excuse, of course, for taking the money that he did. But he has no history of dishonesty. It is, in fairness to the defendant, uncharacteristic." 

Mr Allan added that Stocker now works delivering cars. 

Magistrates fined Stocker £472 and he was ordered to pay £150 in compensation to Mr Rolin. 

Stocker must also pay £250 towards court costs, as well as a victim surcharge of £47. 

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