Thief swiped bank card before going on spending spree and a Greggs pastry

A thief swapped bank cards with an unsuspecting victim before heading off for a spending spree which included a a trip to Greggs.

Jamie-Lee Hitchings, 26, stole Michael Pritchard's bank card after an unannounced visit to his home in Ystrad, Rhondda, Wales on June 1, before making up to £80 worth of purchases. Mr Pritchard had heard a loud knocking at the door before speaking to Hitchings.

Cardiff Crown Court has since heard Hitchings let herself into the property of the victim, who had known her before the incident, and nabbed something from his bedside table. She had refused to show Michael what she had in her hand.

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It was not until later on in the day Mr Pritchard realised Hitchings had made off with his bank card. Said card was used to grab bits and pieces from Spar, Costcutter and Greggs. Prosecutor Aelia Pike detailed the various purchases made with the card, WalesOnline reported.

On the card were a £4.09 purchase from Costcutter, a £6.25 purchase from Texaco, a £3.40 bus ticket from Stagecoach, a £51.09 payment at Spar, a £9 bus ticket from Stagecoach again, and a pop-in at Greggs which cost £3.80. All payments were in Tonypandy and Ton Pentre.

Hitching, of no fixed abode, was arrested the next day, denying the theft and claiming Michael had asked her to use the card for cashback and he would claim the money back. She pleaded guilty to six counts of fraud and theft.

The court heard Hitchings held 22 previous convictions, including 10 offences of theft, burglary and shoplifting. In mitigation, Richard Ace said his client had been on remand for three and a half months, with Hitchings allegedly suffering with mental health issues.

She had previously been released from prison and plans to move to Worcestershire where she has family. The 26-year-old had taken up drugs as a young teen but has been clean since 2021 according to the defence.

Recorder Richard Kember sentenced Hitchings to two months imprisonment.

Because the 26-year-old was held in custody for three-and-a-half months, Hitchingswas released immediately as she had served a longer period on remand than her sentence called for.

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