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Smash and grab teenager in court

PUBLISHED: 13:57 05 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:08 03 March 2010

A CRAVING for alcohol drove an Ipswich teenager to smash the window of a wine shop to steal two bottles of wine worth less than £20.

Gemma Webber, 18, was with a group of friends on July 23 when the burglary took place.

A CRAVING for alcohol drove an Ipswich teenager to smash the window of a wine shop to steal two bottles of wine worth less than £20.

Gemma Webber, 18, was with a group of friends on July 23 when the burglary took place.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' court heard that £550 worth of damage was caused to the window of Victoria Wines, on Meredith Road, Ipswich, as a result of the burglary.

The two bottles of wine taken, which were both in the window of the shop, had a combined value of £19.74.

Webber, who is currently serving a 14 month sentence in a Southend young offenders' institute for robbery and causing actual bodily harm, was arrested in October for the offence after DNA evidence linked her to the crime.

Defending, Roger Thomson said: "Gemma had an alcohol problem at the time and was with a group of friends when the incident took place. They had all run out of money and just wanted some alcohol."

Chairwoman of the bench Anne Parry sentenced Webber to an additional five days to run consecutively with her sentence, which is due to expire in April 2003.

She said: "We consider this to be a serious offence but have taken into consideration the fact that it was not premeditated and your early guilty plea."

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