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Shoplifter with 256 previous convictions bit shop staff and told them she had AIDS

PUBLISHED: 08:20 19 September 2018

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: ARCHANT

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: ARCHANT

A shoplifter who told a security officer and two other members of staff at a Suffolk store that she had AIDS after biting them has been jailed for 21 months.

Chantelle Kerry Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARYChantelle Kerry Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARY

Sentencing Chantelle Kerry, who has 256 previous convictions, Judge Martyn Levett said she had bitten the security guard at Tesco’s at Copdock, near Ipswich, on the hand for 15 seconds and had then bitten a female member of staff on the finger.

A customer assistant who went to the aid of the security guard was bitten on the breast for about 45 seconds by Kerry and described it as one of the most painful things that had ever happened to her.

Judge Levett said that during the incident, which happened in the early hours of July 28 this year, Kerry had shouted: “I’ve got AIDS”, which was an aggravating feature of the case.

The court heard that a week earlier on July 20 Kerry was stopped by a store manager at Tesco’s in Stowmarket on suspicion of stealing bottles of gin worth £112 and had been aggressive and abusive.

During the incident she dropped a bag containing bottles of alcohol, some of which broke.

Kerry had then picked up the broken neck of one of the bottles and had thrown it at the store manager, hitting him in the chest, said Michael Crimp, prosecuting.

“He was concerned that it could have hit him in the face,” said Mr Crimp.

On another occasion Kerry was arrested after she was caught on CCTV stealing candles worth £167 from a store in Carr Street, Ipswich.

Kerry, 36, of Samuel Court, Ipswich, admitted three offences of shoplifting, three offences of assault causing actual bodily harm, and one offence of common assault. She also admitted being in breach of a conditional discharge.

Mr Crimp said that after her arrest Kerry accepted making a reference to AIDS during the incident at Tesco’s at Copdock and that it was a ”horrible” thing to have done to the members of staff.

“She wanted to reassure them she didn’t suffer from AIDS,” said Mr Crimp.

The court heard that Kerry had been in an abusive relationship and had committed the offences to fund her drug habit.

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