A prolific shoplifter who stole 3,000 items in a year has been accused of committing “a crime against Witham”.

Mum-of-three Ann-Marie Elvin, 45, has been ordered to keep all of her receipts for the next two years to prove ownership of any items in her possession.

Unemployed Elvin, of Frances Way, Silver End, is known to have stolen about 3,000 items during the course of last year from shops across Witham, as well as a family’s market stall, Chelmsford Crown Court heard.

Witham Chamber of Commerce chairman Joy Vaughan, of Powers Hall End, said: “She’s like a car crash in the whole town.

“It’s a crime against the community because when businesses lose money, it’s the shoppers who have to pay.

See the Witham Times for the full story.