A convicted thief who was given a suspended sentence on Wednesday claimed he would be seeking help for his drug habit.
Bertram Russell Lynch, Bank Hall, Cross Road, St Michael also told Magistrate Kim Butcher that “from the time I free I don’t think about Verdun House anymore”.
The 59-year-old who has been known to the courts since the 80s was addressing the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court this afternoon after pleading guilty to stealing two bottles of honey worth $84.96 on July 18 belonging to JG Wholesale Discount Limited.
A security guard on duty observed Lynch enter the establishment which is located along Cowell and King George Street, St Michael.
According to the facts read by Station Sergeant Randolph Boyce, Lynch, who is known to frequent the store, was kept under observation via the CCTV monitor. He was seen taking up a boxed juice and joining a line to the cashier. However he left that queue and went to the area where the honey is kept, took up a bottle and placed it in his left pocket.
He then left that area but subsequently returned and took up another bottle and placed it in his right pocket.
Lynch paid for the juice at the cashier with a $100 bill but not the other two items. He was confronted and the items were found during a search. During that time he indicated that he committed the offence to support his drug habit.
He told Magistrate Butcher in his defence today: “I have a serious drug problem . . . I would like a chance to go to Verdun House.”
Lynch claimed that he was never given an opportunity to attend the programme so that “I can straighten my life”.
Asked why he did not take the opportunity when he was out of prison to get into the drug rehabilitation programme he replied: “From the time you get release you don’t think of Verdun House because you free.”
However he was reminded that he had been given several opportunities, throughout the years, to get the help he needed as he was not always sentenced to serve time behind bars.
“I need a second chance,” he replied, adding, “It is alright to say that. You don’t smoke. From the time I free I don’t think about Verdun House no more . . . The environment I go in is about drugs.”
The magistrate told the convict that he was the only one who could address his issue as Verdun House was open to anyone who needed the help. She said one does not have to go through the law courts to do so.
“You know how to find the drug hole. Find a help hole,” the magistrate advised to which Lynch replied, “I going to do that ma’am. I gine do that.”
He was sentenced to six months in prison which was suspended for one year.