Man found with one shoe on after Dundee Specsavers raid costs shop £13k

A Dundee man who broke into a Specsavers shop and caused more than £13,000 of damage and lost revenue has been spared jail.

Douglas Laidlaw, 37, smashed his way into the premises on Murraygate on August 27.

He was later caught by police officers while wearing only one shoe.

But he has been given a second chance by Sheriff Alastair Brown, who said jail would not serve the public interest.

Laidlaw outside court in Dundee.

Instead, the sheriff handed him a community payback order, which will involve him being supervised for two years.

Laidlaw, of Soapwork Lane, admitted breaking into the shop and stealing spectacles, an iPad, coins and a lens case.

Fiscal depute Charmaine Gilmartin said when police arrived they discovered there was a large hole in the bottom of the right-hand door.

There was blood on the glass and frame of the door and on the front step.

CCTV showed the accused kicking the bottom of the door several times, repeatedly trying to pull the glass panel up with his hands and then crawling through the hole in the glass.

Footage also showed him entering various rooms and workstations throughout the premises.

Police went to the homeless unit in Soapwork Lane and described the clothing the suspect was wearing. Images from the unit’s CCTV showed Laidlaw wearing the same clothing.

When Laidlaw returned to the unit, police saw he was under the influence of a substance and was wearing no sock or shoe on his left foot.

Police at Specsavers following the break-in

His left ankle was swollen and he had cuts on his right hand and blood on both his hands. He was also found with a pair of glasses and lens case, stolen from the shop.

At Specsavers, a white Nike trainer was found in an examination room, matching what the accused was wearing when arrested.

The mess he made included iPads removed from stands and lenses knocked to the floor.

There was also blood on various walls, banisters and floors.

Ms Gilmartin said the break-in cost an estimated £10,000 in lost earnings, staff wages of £2,000 were paid, carpet cleaning cost £400 and the repairs to the door were £915.

The stolen glasses were £69 and the lens case was £80.