South Yorkshire drug addict robbed debt collector

Nichola Pearson, jailed for three years for robbery and fraud
Nichola Pearson, jailed for three years for robbery and fraud

A drug addict who robbed a female debt collector of more than £2,000 has been jailed for three years.

Nichola Pearson, aged 38, who was addicted to the drug Mcat, robbed the employee of Provident Loans when she came to her house to collect a payment.

Pearson had applied for a £300 loan using false details because she was already on a blacklist.

She agreed to repay the cash at £15 a week - but when a woman debt collector then came to her house Pearson held her up.

The debt collector told police she felt ‘something sharp’ in her shoulder and Pearson grabbed her money bag and threatened to stab her, said Nicholas Neale, prosecuting at Sheffield Crown Court.

The collector’s glasses were knocked off and she suffered bruising to her arm before she raised the alarm at a neighbour’s.

Police arrived and found £2,112 and some cheques were missing from the woman’s money bag.

Mr Neale said about a fortnight later Pearson, of Gosling Gate Road, Goldthorpe, Barnsley, tried to use a credit card at a store in Doncaster Road, Goldthorpe. It was rejected but she and another woman escaped with £53 worth of goods.

When arrested for the robbery Pearson was found to be in possession of a small amount of the drug Mcat, or meow meow.

She told police she had snatched the collector’s bag and spent most of the money on drugs.

Pearson admitted two offences of fraud, robbery and possessing Mcat.

Michael Caine-Soothill, defending, said she had become hooked on Mcat and was so intoxicated she could not be sure what happened.

Her heroin substitute methadone prescription had been suspended, and her partner had been jailed, which left her ‘desperate and alone’.

She turned to Mcat for solace and to reduce the physical symptoms of withdrawal from harder drugs.

Sentencing her, Judge Michael Murphy said: “Mcat, like other so-called softer drugs, is anything but soft when taken by the wrong people.

“At the time of these offences your life was out of control due to drugs.”

He added: “This was a deliberate robbery with the threat of a weapon and the use of force.”