A judge refused a demand by a defendant that he should be sent to jail.
Lee Trask, 43, had admitted shoplifting £150 of goods from Asda.
But when he was given a conditional discharge for 12 months by District Judge Rod Ross sitting at Blackpool Magistrates, Trask stood in the dock and said: “I have nowhere to go – nowhere to live. Please send me to prison. I need to go to prison. I am not fit enough to live on the streets. I am going to die. If I leave and shoplift will you send me to prison away from the heroin?”
The judge said he was restricted by his sentencing guidelines which means he could only consider detaining Trask behind bars if he breached the conditional discharge.
The court heard that Trask was seen crossing the car park at Asda with a trolly load of items which were not in bags.
He was detained by an off-duty security officer who had been sitting in a car.
Kathryn Sinclair-Jamieson, defending, said: “My client is recovering from serious surgery and is in a bad way. Many of the items were for him to eat.”