A TEENAGER who stole a wallet from a van in Battle town centre has been warned that he could face prison if he comes before the courts again.
Max Nevin had to be captor sprayed in the face before police were able to search him and recover stolen credit cards.
Nevin, 19, of Hastings Road, Battle, pleaded guilty to one charge of theft from a motor vehicle, one charge of obstructing a PC, two charges of interfering with a motor vehicle and two charges of fraud by false representation when he appeared before Hastings Magistrates Court last week.
He also pleaded not guilty to failing to surrender to bail, a charge which was subsequently dismissed.
Jeremy King, prosecuting, said: “Murat Burns, a delivery driver, had parked in the High Street, Battle, on July 20 and left his van briefly to buy a sandwich.
“When he returned he found his wallet had been stolen.
“Later, workers on a scaffold saw Nevin acting suspiciously by their lorry.
“He then ran down an alley and was spotted acting suspiciously by a Vauxhall Corsa.
“He used the stolen cards at local cash points trying to get money out but was unsuccessful.
“When police caught up with him he actively resisted arrest, struggling and throwing himself around.
“They had to spray him in the face before they could search him.
“They found the stolen cards on him and he told them he had found them.
“He would not comment in interview and failed to attend the first court hearing.”
Aiden Harvey, defending, said: “Reports have been prepared by probation and they are suggesting an unpaid work order.”
Magistrates ordered Nevin to complete 100 hours of unpaid work as part of a 12 month community order and he must also pay £20 costs.
Chairman of the bench, Gordon Waters, told him: “The last time you appeared it was in a youth court.
“You are in the big boys league now, nasty things happen in this court.
“You continue to do things like obstructing police officers and nicking from cars and next time you will be going to prison.”