A struggling woman committed her first offence in three years when her benefits were stopped.
Alexandra Hotchkiss admitted stealing a pair of headphones from the Southgate branch of Sainsbury’s.
Kirklees magistrates heard that the 52-year-old had remained trouble free for some time after her misuse of drugs almost killed her.
The theft happened on February 7 when Hotchkiss was spotted by staff trying to remove a security tag from the headphones before stashing them inside her bag.
She was detained as she left the store and got into an argument with the security guard as she claimed that she’d changed her mind and wanted to give them back.
Magistrates were told that Hotchkiss, of Leeds Road in Huddersfield, had 59 offences to her name including 36 for shop theft.
Her solicitor Mike Sisson-Pell explained that she last troubled the courts in 2014 when she received a term of imprisonment.
He said: “She was very poorly and spent time in hospital where she nearly died due to drugs. This was enough to stop her from taking drugs and she’s since behaved.
“However, her benefits were sanctioned and she stole the goods to get some food.”
Magistrates gave Hotchkiss a 12-month conditional discharge, meaning that she will stay out of trouble if she does not offend again within this period.
She will still have to pay £85 costs and £20 victim surcharge.