Postman thief avoids jail because of 'rollercoaster trauma'
A parcel-stealing postman has walked free after a judge heard of the 'trauma' he suffered on a French rollercoaster.George Ramplin, 43, who had worked as a postman for 22 years, was caught hoarding packages containing DVDs and CDs in the run-up to Christmas last year.
He was immediately sacked by Royal Mail but avoided prison after telling the court of the 'trauma' he suffered after riding the Big Thunder Mountain attraction at Disneyland, Paris.
Ramplin's barrister Katrina Jamieson claimed the rollercoaster brought back memories of a tragic accident he was involved in as a child.
Seven children and a teacher died in a minibus crash in Harwich, Essex, in 1978, which Ramplin survived despite suffering head injuries.
Ms Jamieson told Chelmsford Crown Court: 'Thunder Mountain is a very fast, frightening rollercoaster ride.'
She explained that the ride had caused flashbacks which had taken away Ramplin's confidence and caused him to lose two-and-a-half stone.
Judge Laura Harris said post traumatic stress disorder provided an explanation 'for this completely irrational' behaviour, adding: 'This is a tragedy for you and your family.'
She imposed a six-month community order with a six-month curfew between 7pm and 7am and ordered Ramplin to pay £350 costs.
Postman Richard O'Brien recently pleaded guilty to stealing parcels from Royal Mail and was given a six-month jail sentence suspended for 18 months. He was also ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work and pay £1,000 in costs.