Man jailed following theft of handbag in Christchurch

A man who stole a handbag from an elderly woman in Christchurch has been jailed.

Gregory Aston Dixon, aged 58 and of Ted Bates Road, Southampton, was sentenced at South London Magistrates’ Court on Thursday 30 August 2018 after admitting theft and three charges of fraud by false representation relating to subsequent use of the victim’s bank cards.

He was sentenced to 14 weeks in prison for the theft and a further six weeks for the fraud offences.

At around 4.25pm on Thursday 21 June 2018 the victim, a woman aged in her 70s, was in Christchurch Library on High Street when her handbag was stolen from the chair she was sitting on.

The bag contained bank cards, keys, a mobile phone, glasses and cash.

The victim’s cards were then used the same day by Dixon to carry out transactions at the BP service station and Lidl in Somerford Road. The total value of the three transactions was £68.33.

Dixon’s name was put forward by members of the public in response to a CCTV appeal issued by Dorset Police and he was arrested.

Police Constable Matt Leeding, of Christchurch police, said: “I would like to thank everyone who shared and responded to the appeal, which assisted with bringing Dixon to justice for his crimes.

“This was an opportunistic theft and I would like to remind people to ensure they keep bags and possessions close to them to avoid becoming a victim of thieves such as Dixon. For more crime prevention advice visit www.dorset.police.uk/help-advice-crime-prevention/.”