A DRUG addict spat at a member of staff in a Swindon bookmakers after she told him to unplug his phone charger, magistrates in the town heard.

Sean Nicholas Little, 27, of Shaftesbury Avenue, Calne pleaded guilty to abstracting electricity from the shop on May 1 this year and to assaulting the member of staff.

Prosecutor Pauline Lambert told the magistrates on July 17 that Little had gone into William Hill bookmakers on Rodbourne Road and plugged his phone charger into a socket near a gaming machine.

The member of staff asked him several times to take the charger out, and when he did not do so she went over to the socket and bent down to take out the charger herself, at which point Little elbowed her out of the way.

He then removed the charger and spat at the woman before leaving the shop.

The woman told police she had spittle down her clothing and felt disgusted. Even staff members were not allowed to charge their phones at work, she said.

Ms Lambert said Little had a long history of offending, the most recent of which was a series of six shop thefts for which he had been given a suspended prison sentence of six weeks on June 7.

Richard Williams, defending, said Little was a regular customer at the William Hill shop, where he had placed many bets and had often plugged in his charger.

His account of the incident on May 1 was that the member of staff had rushed up to him, sworn at him and when he had his hand on the charger to take it out her nails had dug into his hand. He had reacted by pushing her away.

He did not accept that he spat at her but may have sneezed in her direction.

Mr Williams added that Little had a long history of Class A drug abuse although he was now on methadone, was in a stable relationship and had a child on the way.

A report from the probation service described Little as quite chaotic, with no stable address and ongoing health issues.

He was sentenced to two weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months, to run alongside his current orders and to pay £50 compensation to the member of staff at William Hill.