A pregnant woman charged with burglaries and thefts who was twice refused bail has been released from custody due to a medical condition.
Natasha Kelly, 27, of McLean Court, Portland, and McGregors Road, Warrnambool, unsuccessfully applied for bail on two occasions in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court earlier this month.
But Ms Kelly, who is 30 weeks pregnant, was released on bail on Tuesday and her case was adjourned until October due to a medical condition that could see her go into early labour.
In a previous bail application, barrister Timothy F. Sullivan conceded that his client had used ice since becoming pregnant and that being in custody could be the best place for her.
But on Tuesday Mr Sullivan urged the court to reconsider Ms Kelly’s bail, stating that her medical condition was a danger to her and her unborn child.
Ms Kelly has been charged with burglaries, thefts, handling stolen goods, obtaining financial advantage by deception and attempting to gain property by deception.
Warrnambool police Leading Senior Constable Kevin Mullins said alleged Ms Kelly was involved in a string of burglaries at a Raglan Parade address in March, where a driver's licence, cheque book, trailer and tools were stolen.
He said Ms Kelly was later found with the stolen drivers licence and was caught on security camera footage trying to deposit a stolen cheque made out for $1000 into a bank.
The transaction was declined.
Ms Kelly told the court that, prior to being taken into custody, she was using one point of ice per day.
Leading Senior Constable Mullins said it was quite plain that the dangers of Ms Kelly’s drug use didn’t exist while she was in custody, but they did on the outside.
He said her unborn child’s life would be placed at risk if she was granted bail.
The court heard that if released, Ms Kelly would stay with her mother, who had previously been hospitalised due to stress relating to Ms Kelly and the baby.
Magistrate Alan Spillane said if successful, the bail application would be a “very unusual procedure.”
He said Ms Kelly’s 23 days of pre-sentence detention wasn’t enough to be considered as time served.
Ms Kelly was granted bail with strict conditions, including a curfew. The case was adjourned to October 24.