A persistent shoplifter has been jailed after targeting stores over several months across Dudley. 

Chelsea Davies, aged 30, of no fixed abode, was sentenced to 51 weeks in prison at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court last Friday (December 15) after stealing from a number of retailers in the Brierley Hill area. 

Davies had targeted several shops from small family businesses to supermarkets and took items ranging from designer fragrances to household goods and food. 

She had previously been charged and remanded for an earlier shoplifting offence in May and was given a community order to attend rehabilitation. 

Despite this, Davies continued to steal from shops and sometimes threatened staff when challenged. 

Inspector Michelle Allen, the Brierley Hill Neighbourhood Policing Manager, said: "Chelsea Davies was a brazen shoplifter whose persistent offending over a period of time, stealing items totalling hundreds of pounds in value, was a blight on local retail outlets."

On one occasion in October, Davies entered a shop in Brierley Hill and placed several boxes of washing up powder in her jacket. 

She was spotted by a staff member who asked her to return the items, but she refused and stole the worker's mobile phone and case containing cash and bank card as she made her way to the exit. 

Before she fled, the staff member managed to grab Davies's jacket, which contained her name and an address in Brierley Hill and following interviews with staff and reviewing CCTV footage, police caught up with her. 

Davies was arrested on Thursday, December 14 and charged with 16 counts of theft before being convicted the following day. 

Inspector Allen added: "We understand the cost to business and distress that shoplifting causes and where offences are reported we will investigate and work to identify those responsible. 

"We also work with staff to improve security and discourage shoplifting through crime prevention and safeguarding advice."