Woman admits Specsavers theft

A PORTISHEAD woman who pleaded guilty to stealing almost �5,000 from her employer, Specsavers, has avoided a prison sentence.

North Somerset Magistrates Court heard Kayleigh Fisher, aged 26, of Black Nore Point, Portishead, had stolen �4,838.02 in money and cheques while she worked at the opticians in The Precinct, Portishead.

Magistrate Geoff Mills, who served Fisher with an 18-week suspended sentence, said: “We have given you credit for your guilty plea and if you had not done so you would expect to go to jail today.”

The thefts took place between February 17 and June 24, with the defence putting them down to stress caused by the death of Fisher’s grandparents.

David Bird, defending, said: “It was during this very stressful and difficult part of her life that she committed these offences.

“It was simply to spend money on fripperies to take her mind off the situation at hand and make her feel good about herself for a short period of time.”

Mr Bird told the court that Fisher’s parents were mortified by her actions and have agreed to pay �4,000 of the compensation to Specsavers from the sale of her late grandparent’s property.

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Character references were provided for Fisher by her family, friends and a counsellor who she started seeing after the event.

Mr Bird said Fisher comes from a loving background and is a supportive member of her family. She looked after her elderly grandparents who had moved into her family home during the last days of their lives.

Fisher also had a previous charge of dishonesty where she used another person’s credit card to purchase items over the internet.

Mr Bird said that before the offences at Specsavers Fisher was well-regarded by her employer and was even offered funding to go to university to qualify as a dispensing optician.

As well as her 18-week suspended sentence, Fisher was also given a curfew for the next three months and has to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work in the community. She was also ordered to pay the compensation to Specsavers in 28 days.