A thief who stole meat from Farmfoods when his benefits were changed has been jailed.
Gareth Cooke claimed he was struggling for cash when his Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) was switched to Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
He went into the frozen food store on Market Street in Huddersfield town centre on June 26 and headed straight to the meat aisle.
Kirklees magistrates were told that he then filled an empty drawstring holdall with £31 worth of goods and was challenged by staff outside.
The 33-year-old initially refused to co-operate but then showed the contents of his bag to a passing Police Community Support Officer who intervened.
Cooke was arrested and told police that he was homeless and struggling for money.
He accepted that he had no right to take meat from the store, prosecutor Alex Bozman said.
Cooke, of Elm Court in Marsh, admitted shop theft and also pleaded guilty to breaching his community order.
He was handed the six month order in June for stealing three bottles of Jack Daniel’s from Tesco in the town.
But he failed to show for appointments with probation staff on June 12 and 18 and had not been in contact with the service since his initial induction appointment.
John Bottomley, mitigating, explained that shop thefts were relatively new offences committed by his client after he experienced issues with his benefits.
He told magistrates: “He’s switching from ESA to PIP and there have been some difficulties in that transition which has left him without money.
“He has chosen to fill that gap by going and shoplifting.”
Magistrates jailed Cooke for nine weeks. He will have to pay £115 victim surcharge when he is released from custody.