Sainsbury’s store worker from Bury St Edmunds who stole £24k from Haverhill branch threw cash in the bin

A Sainsbury's store. Picture: JOHN STILLWELL/PA WIRE

A Sainsbury's store. Picture: JOHN STILLWELL/PA WIRE - Credit: PA

A Sainsbury’s store worker with a gambling addiction who handed himself into police after stealing £24,000 has walked free from court after a judge decided not to send him straight to prison.

Mark Tebbit took the cash from a till at the Haverhill branch of the store where he was working and went to Great Yarmouth where he spent some of the money at betting shops and arcades before throwing the rest in a bin, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Joanne Eley, prosecuting, said the next day at 9.15am Tebbit walked into a police station in Bury St Edmunds and confessed to stealing money from his employer.

He was arrested and a number of bank notes were found in his wallet.

A duty manager at the store was contacted and confirmed that £24,123 was missing from a self scanning cash till and paperwork had been incorrectly filled in.

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During police interviews Tebbit said be had not been in a good place and had wanted to kill himself.

He said he had a gambling addiction and had put the money from the till in a plastic bag.

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He had spent some of it in a betting shop and had put £1,000 in his bank account.

The rest Tebbit had thrown away in a roadside bin, the court was told.

Tebbit, 36, of Risbygate Street, Bury St Edmunds, admitted theft by an employee in September and was given a 12-month jail sentence suspended for a year, and a 20 day rehabilitation programme.

A proceeds of crime hearing will take place back at the court in December.

Sentencing Tebbit, Recorder Joseph Boothby urged him to seek help and support for his addiction issues from Gamblers Anonymous.

“You were riding quite high through the management at Sainsbury’s and you have thrown the whole lot away,” the judge added.

Tebbit, who represented himself, said he had taken an overdose of anti-depressants the day before he took the money from the store.

He said he felt he had no reason to carry on after losing his fiancée, house and child.

He said he had loved his job and had been on track to be promoted.

“It was the best job I’ve ever had and all they (Sainsbury’s) have done is support me,” Tebbit added in his mitigation.

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