Man blames head injury for acts of theft

Craven Herald: The defendant appeared at Skipton Magistrates' Court The defendant appeared at Skipton Magistrates' Court

A 28-year-old who blamed a life threatening head injury for his impulsive acts of theft has been given a community sentence for stealing from a Grassington outdoor wear shop.

Joseph Atha took a £220 Rab jacket from CC Outdoors in October and was recognised by shop staff when he returned at a later date, Skipton magistrates heard.

Atha, who had been with another man on his return trip, had been chased by a member of staff, had got away in a black BMW car, but was traced through its number plate.

At the time of the offence he had been on a 40-week prison sentence, suspended for 20 months.

Atha, of Nile Street, Cross Roads, Keighley, who pleaded guilty to theft last month, was sentenced following reports.

The court heard in mitigation that he had been the victim of a serious assault in 2010 which had left him in a coma with little chance of recovery.

Julian White said he had recovered, but as a result had suffered a personality change and was subject to impulsive acts of behaviour.

He was handed a 12-month community order with a 30 days general activity requirement and ordered to pay costs of £85, a victims surcharge of £60 and compensation of £220 to the shop.

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