Lorry driver steals wallet with precious keepsake of man’s beloved dead partner
A LORRY driver stole a wallet containing a precious keepsake of the owners’s dead partner only to later throw it out of the cab window so it could never be found. HGV driver Andrew Dadge, of Goldsmith Road, Brickfields, Worcester, picked up the wallet which another lorry driver had dropped as he filled up at services at Pinvin, near Pershore. The 51-year-old later threw the wallet out of his cab window despite it containing an irreplaceable memento treasured by the owner – a lock of his late partner’s hair intertwined with that of their daughter and a love letter she wrote before she died.
THIEF: Andrew Dadge leaves Worcester Magistrates Court Dadge admitted theft by finding when he appeared before magistrates in Worcester on Thursday.
He took the wallet, which belonged to Mark Hanson, on December 7 last year. In total it contained GBP460 in cash and a Challenge Coin showing the SAS wing badge valued at GBP450.
FREE: Andrew Dadge was fined for theft by finding However, Dadge was traced via CCTV at Pinvin Service Station. The owner returned to the garage looking for the wallet and was told there was footage of a man picking it off the floor before driving off.
The owner called police and Dadge was identified as being the driver by his employers once the vehicle was traced. Liz Blacklock, prosecuting, said: “He has admitted to taking the wallet and throwing it out of the window while driving along.” Miss Blacklock argued there was ‘significant additional harm’.
“The reason for that is that he (Mr Hanson) said the wallet contained various sentimental items including a lock of his deceased partner’s hair and their own daughter’s hair woven into it.” The wallet also contained a love note from her. “These items can never be replaced.
It was on his mind throughout Christmas” she said. Dadge’s last previous conviction was in 1999 and he did have ‘a couple of dishonesty matters as a youth. Mr Turnbull, defending, said Dadge initially picked up the brown wallet because he thought it was his and it was quite close to his vehicle.
However, he realised he had his own wallet before he drove off. Mr Turnbull said, as Dadge was driving, he realised he had ‘made a mistake’ by taking the wallet. He added: “To compound things he discarded the wallet.”
Magistrates ordered him to pay GBP910 in compensation to the wallet’s owner.
They fined him GBP543, ordered him to pay costs of GBP185 and a victim surcharge of GBP54.