A WOMAN from Stourport has been jailed after admitting 14 counts of theft from shops in Kidderminster, Droitwich and Worcester.

Laura Whatmore, 32, of Windmill Close, stole toys, confectionery and beauty products worth over £370 from Tesco and plug-in oils and cleaning items worth £100 from B&M.

The thefts took place on at least five occasions between July and November last year.

Appearing at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court on Tuesday, March 30, Whatmore also admitted stealing over £570 worth of goods from shops in Droitwich in September, including Wilko, Boots, WH Smith, Peacocks and Savers.

She also pleaded guilty to thefts in Worcester, where she stole vitamins, air fresheners, clothing, fragrances and £900 worth of cosmetics from shops including M&S, Next, Wilko and Superdrug.

The offences were committed while Whatmore was subject to a conditional discharge order and a suspended sentence for previous thefts.

Magistrates said the crimes were made more serious because Whatmore was a persistent offender and played a significant role in the group that committed the thefts.

They sentenced her to 24 weeks in prison.

In another case at court that day, a Kidderminster man was committed to a young offenders' institution after he was found guilty of intentionally obstructing a police officer.

Malachi Chambers-Blackwood, 20, of Willow Court, pleaded not guilty to the offences but was found guilty in a summary trial.

On March 15 last year, the defendant intentionally obstructed a police constable in the exercise of his powers under the Misuse of Drugs Act in Kidderminster.

He was committed to detention in a young offenders' institution for 26 weeks.

Magistrates said the offence was so serous because he deliberately avoided a police search and used violence to carry out his escape. He also had a previous record.

Chambers-Blackwood must also pay a £128 victim surcharge.