Out on parole, straight back to court

A man accused of robbery and false imprisonment four days after he was paroled has been denied bail.

Mitchell John Sebbens, 32, of Rippon Road, Hamilton, made an application for bail in Warrnambool Magistrates Court yesterday after he was remanded overnight by a bail justice.

He has been charged with robbery, false imprisonment, theft, assault with intention to rob, assault in company and unlawful assault.

Detective Sergeant Roger McClure, of Hamilton CIU, told the court that on January 18 Mr Sebbens and two co-accused went to the victim’s house and asked for $300.

The victim offered $100 but was told it wasn’t enough. Detective Sergeant McClure said a co-accused then threatened to headbutt the victim, who was told to give them the money or he’d be bashed.

The court heard Mr Sebbens, who had been in jail for a serious assault, was paroled on January 14 but within four days had breached his conditions by not attending medical and drug and alcohol appointments.

Detective Sergeant McClure said Mr Sebbens had a history of breaching bail — the last occasion resulting in him being jailed for two months — and he was concerned the accused would interfere with witnesses.

Mr Sebbens’ defence counsel said his client would contest the charges.

He said Mr Sebbens was in a stable household and had the support of his mother and extended family. 

He said Mr Sebbens was on the methadone program and had made the decision to turn his life around.

On previous occasions when released from jail he had “come out with a chip on his shoulder” but had a very different attitude this time, his solicitor said.

Magistrate Jonathan Klestadt said the prosecution case was a relatively strong one and he couldn’t see why two people would make up a story of a such serious nature.

He said Mr Sebbens had a lengthy history involving violence and dishonesty and had six previous offences for failing to appear on bail.

Mr Sebbens was remanded to appear in the Hamilton Magistrates Court on February 20.