Suppression lifts on grave plaque thief

Name suppression has lifted on a Christchurch woman who pleaded guilty last month to stealing 37 war veteran plaques from Springston Cemetery.

The woman, Gail Maree Wickes, has also now admitted earlier offending, at a video-link appearance in the Christchurch District Court.

Wickes, 41, did not apply to renew her name suppression for the theft of the plaques, and also pleaded guilty to possession of a needle for using cannabis, possession of a knuckle duster, and two charges of failing to answer District Court bail.

A further charge of unlawfully getting into a car was withdrawn by police.

Judge Alistair Garland remanded Wickes in custody for sentencing on all charges on August 21.

Police said Wilkes removed the grave plaques with a chisel to get cash to buy methamphetamine.

Wilkes turned herself in to police about two weeks later.

Police retrieved the plaques from scrap dealers, but they had been defaced, and the names were removed.