Thief Ryan Twardun stole three purses from a downtown nightclub. The 29-year-old was with another man in Fiction, Hanley, when they saw two women come out of their cabin to help their friend who had fallen while going to the toilet.
They stole the purses from the stand and went to the bathroom. But the girls spotted them and alerted the security guards. They retrieved the bags, but let the men go without checking the contents.
The victims realized they were missing items including phones, bank cards and cash, and the defendants were found on CCTV. All stolen items were recovered except for £50 from one bag and £40 from another.
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Now Twardun, who was convicted of 36 offences, has been sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court. Prosecutor Ian Ball said the three victims socialized in Fiction at 1:30 a.m. on May 20, 2019 and came into contact with guys, including the accused.
“One of the girls slipped on a step while going to the bathroom and two friends came out of the cabin to help. Their handbags were stolen,” he said. ‘The group returned to the stand and realized that the handbags and their contents, including phones and bank cards, had been stolen.’
One of the victims spotted the accused with another man going to the bathroom. They made the security guards go to the toilets and they collected the bags and let the men go.
But they did not check the contents of the bags. One of the victims had an iPhone, £50 and a bank card missing. Another had £40 missing and the third was missing her Gucci handbag.
Security officers contacted CCTV operators and the accused and his accomplice were found. All of the stolen items were recovered, except one victim was missing £50 and a second had £40 out of pocket.
Twardun, of Kingstock, Market Drayton, pleaded guilty to three charges of theft. The other man, who has no previous convictions, admitted the charges at an earlier hearing and was fined.
The court heard the defendant accept that it was a nasty offence. He has been in dark places and has a number of mental health issues including paranoia, borderline personality disorder, anxiety and depression. He now works with mental health services and works full time as a bricklayer.
As part of the suspended sentence, Twardun must complete 80 hours of unpaid work; a six-month alcohol treatment requirement; a rehabilitative activity requirement of up to 30 days and a reflection program.
He was ordered to pay compensation of £50 to one victim and £40 to the other woman.
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