A SMASH and grab burglary at a Port Fairy jewellery store has resulted in a four-month jail term for the thief.
Justin Garry Turner, 28, of Elizabeth Street, Port Fairy, pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court this week to burglary, theft and two counts of causing damage.
Magistrate Jonathan Klestadt said considering Turner’s 11 pages of prior convictions, which included jail terms, only another stint in prison was appropriate.
Turner was jailed for 13 months with a minimum of four months to be served before being eligible for parole. He has already served nine days in custody.
Turner was also ordered to pay $2448.70 compensation, $1785.70 for damaging a unit at a caravan park while drunk and $663 for breaking the jewellery store window.
Police said that on February 12 Turner and a co-accused went to a Warrnambool caravan park on Henna Street where they consumed alcohol and trashed a room, causing damage estimated at $1785.70.
At 3am on August 3 security camera footage showed Turner carrying a bag to Leske’s Jewellers on Port Fairy’s Bank Street.
Turner removed a jemmy bar from the bag and smashed it against the toughened glass window about eight times until it broke, then stole two watches.
Security camera footage showed him leaving the jewellery store.
One of the watches and the clothes he was wearing when he committed the burglary were found in Turner’s home when police executed a search warrant.
Turner’s bail conditions included a curfew, that he live with his mother and that he not drink alcohol.
But when police went to his home on August 16 with a separate warrant they found Turner had gone to Melbourne for the weekend.
He was arrested on August 19 and he found to have a blood-alcohol reading of .062.
He was remanded in custody until yesterday’s hearing.
Other charges recently laid by police, some of which relate to a serious assault, are yet to be heard by a court.
Defence counsel Alex McCulloch said Turner lived with his mother, who has lung cancer.
He said his client was illiterate, having been expelled from school in year nine, and drank about half a cask of wine every day, as well as beer and spirits.
All of Turner’s offending was alcohol-related, he said.
Mr Klestadt said Turner had previously breached two community corrections orders and been on parole in 2011 after being released from jail.
He said the recent offending involved a burglary at night on a commercial premises and Turner had lasted only 11 days on bail before breaching his conditions.
The magistrate said he was prepared to accept Turner did not have the best start in life but there were plenty of people in the same boat who did not accumulate 11 pages of prior convictions.
He said in the past nine days Turner had a chance to detox from alcohol and probably now realised that at 28 years old it was time to do something about his behaviour.