A prolific shoplifter from the Isle of Sheppey has faced instant justice after she was jailed less than 24 hours after being charged.

Carlene Ripley repeatedly targeted a Tesco store in Bridge Road, Sheerness stealing items including bottles of spirits and a vacuum cleaner.

The thefts took place on 2 April and 4 April 2022, when Ripley fled with the stolen items by opening a fire escape or quickly making her way through an alarmed exit.

CCTV images were passed to the Swale Victim Based Crime Team and officers recognised her as the suspect.

The 38-year-old was arrested on Saturday 21 May and charged the next day with two counts of theft.

Ripley was remanded to Medway Magistrates’ Court on Monday 23 May and pleaded guilty.

She had also breached two previous suspended sentences related to shoplifting offences and was jailed on the same day to 10 months’ imprisonment.

Inspector Paul Stoner said: ‘Prolific criminals like Ripley relentlessly target retailers with the sole intention of stealing high value items to either consume or sell.

‘Shoplifting is never a victimless crime and it can have a drastic effect on businesses, which is why we use plain clothes officers as part of our ongoing efforts to prevent and catch thieves who target our communities.’

By Ed

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