A WOMAN has appeared at court after targeting the same shop three times to steal laundry products.

Amy Joanne Kelly, of Wilshire Place, Darlington, pleaded guilty to three charges of theft from Wilkinson's in Darlington town centre.

Newton Aycliffe Magistrates' Court heard that the 30-year-old visited the shop on Friday, October 18 to steal three automatic air fresheners before returning twice nine days later on October 27 to steal nine bottles of laundry detergent.

Kelly has 41 previous convictions for 80 offences, 40 of which are related to theft.

Ben Pegman, mitigating, said: "It is an unremarkable theft, but what is remarkable is that this lady has not offended for two years.

"She was a very regular offender due to heroin addiction and it is disappointing that she finds herself back in court today.

"She explains to me that there has been a step backwards in terms of substances and also of funds, her partner's benefits have been sanctioned."

Chair of the bench, Christine Ramshaw, said: "We are taking into consideration that you have been out of trouble for two years, so that's what has made the difference here.

"But you have offended and you do have to be sentenced for that."

Kelly was given a conditional discharge for six months and ordered to pay £25 compensation, £40 costs and £21 victim surcharge.