Sheriff offers food for thought before pair have sentence deferred

Two food thieves ordered meals and drink from two restaurants and left without paying.

Eighteen-year-old Kelly Parish, a local actress, who received a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Awards nomination last year for her leading role in the short film drama, Freeze, and 21-year-old first offender Stuart Learmonth, both of Allars Bank, admitted, along with co-accused Daniel Finnie, of Sandbed, obtaining food and drink worth £102.55 without paying, at Shebab, North Bridge Street, on March 1.

They also admitted a similar crime, totaling £95.20 at the Laughing Buddha, High Street, on March 2.

Finnie and Parish also admitted stealing alcohol, worth £16.98, at Lidl, Wilton Path, on March 4.

Prosecutor Tessa Bradley told Jedburgh Sheriff Court how the accused consumed “copious amounts of food and drink, then left without paying.” Miss Bradley said Finnie and Parish had been stopped as they tried to leave Lidl with alcohol, and the items were recovered.

Parish’s lawyer Rory Bannerman said the offences were “fuelled by a lack of fuel”.

Mr Bannerman said Parish had shown great remorse.

Solicitor Alison Marshall, respresenting Learmonth, said her client was assessed at low risk of reoffending and was keen to make compensation.

“He is very disappointed at himself for behaving in this way,” said Miss Marshall.

Sheriff Donald Corke granted a warrant for the arrest of Finnie, who failed to appear, and deferred sentence until November 3 for Parish and Learmonth to save money towards compensation.

“Businesses can’t function properly when people do this sort of thing,” he told the accused.