A STUDENT drove her car at a supermarket staff member who confronted her for stealing flowers and crashed in a Worcester supermarket car park.

Naomi Judge admitted theft and careless driving when she appeared before magistrates in Worcester on Thursday. The staff member ‘jumped’ out of the way of her car.

The 21-year-old, of Winchester Avenue, Worcester, stole the £15 flowers from Sainsbury’s but, when challenged by a member of staff, drove off, striking a bollard and a parked car on September 17 this year.

Shafquat Reaz, prosecuting, said it was around 12.30pm when the defendant took flowers from the display at Sainsbury’s in Worcester and a member of staff followed her out to her car. “It’s here he has confronted her and here he explained she has not paid for these flowers,” said the prosecutor who said Judge ‘refused to engage with him’.

He added: “The car was driven at him and he has jumped out of the way. As she has passed she has struck a bollard and a nearby parked car.”

Police later arrived at her home address. Judge had no previous criminal convictions. No injuries were caused during the incident.

Sam Lamsdale, defending, said Judge was a student at the university and had completed her degree and was now studying as a postgraduate.

“During this year she has become increasingly anxious,” the Worcester solicitor said. She argued that Judge had been ‘acting out of character’ when she took the flowers and had money enough to pay for them and had already purchased a greetings card for a friend. “She thinks this was a cry for help” said Mrs Lamsdale who said the member of staff had been ‘very strident with her’ which triggered ‘the feeling of fight or flight’.

Magistrates imposed a 12 month conditional discharge and ordered her to pay £15 compensation. They also added five penalty to points to what had been a full, clean licence and ordered her to pay an £80 fine, a £34 victim surcharge and £135 costs.