Woman stole to fund addiction, court told

Jennifer Miller, 30, of Bridge Road, Warrnambool, pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court yesterday to a series of offences committed between February and March this year.

Jennifer Miller, 30, of Bridge Road, Warrnambool, pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court yesterday to a series of offences committed between February and March this year.

A WOMAN who committed a string of burglaries and used a stolen credit card to bankroll her drug addiction has been offered a second chance by a Warrnambool magistrate. 

Jennifer Miller, 30, of Bridge Road, Warrnambool, pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court yesterday to a series of offences committed between February and March this year. 

The court heard Miller broke into the Warrnambool College canteen three times, the first time stealing $500.

On another occasion she smashed a window forcing her way into the Tower Hill visitor information centre but was unable to find any cash. She also broke into a parked car, taking a video camera. 

Police prosecutor Leading Senior Constable Kevin Mullins said Miller also used a stolen credit card to buy iPhones, food, cigarettes and a taxi fare around Warrnambool. 

Defence counsel Carolyn Howe said her client bought items with the aim of refunding them for money to be used to purchase heroin. 

However, she said her client had spent a lot of time on the Odyssey House rehabilitation program and had made progress under a methadone program. 

“She is seeking to stay at Odyssey House ... she has manipulated her family and she will do anything for that next hit,” Ms Howe said. 

Magistrate Andrew Capell acknowledged Miller had avoided trouble for three years while at Odyssey House and conceded she was likely to “be out reoffending again” if she completed a prison sentence.

“Normally I would imprison her,” Mr Capell warned. 

“These are really serious matters. If you had broken into residential homes I would have had no choice but to imprison you.”

The magistrate said rehabilitation placements with Odyssey House were “rare and very hard to get into” and Miller would be rejected if she kept relapsing into bad habits. 

Miller was given a 12-month community corrections order and ordered to complete 200 hours’ unpaid work.

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