A Warrnambool man has lost his mother's $5000 surety and will spend 10 months in jail over a crime spree that saw him steal and torch a car, evade police and punch a publican in the face.
Aaron Mitchem, 35, of Dunlea Court, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court to 19 charges, including recklessly causing injury, assault, fail to stop on police direction, theft of a motor vehicle and acting in a way that is prejudicial to good order or management of the police gaol.
He was jailed for 10 months and has already served 59 days in custody on remand. He was also fined $500 and his driver's licence was disqualified for 14 months.
On July 14 last year, Mitchem stole a Ford Territory from a car park in Warrnambool's Kepler Street.
The following day he drove the stolen vehicle to retail stores in Warrnambool, Werribee, Altona and Hoppers Crossing and stole bottles of alcohol, cigarettes and two chainsaws worth $1120.
On July 17, the vehicle was found abandoned at Wangoom's Hopkins Falls Road. The interior had been torched and was extensively damaged.
Then on July 30, Mitchem attended Macey's Hotel in Warrnambool and asked to purchase a bottle of Jim Beam and a packet of cigarettes.
A barman placed the items on the counter and Mitchem picked them up, said 'see-ya' and ran away without paying.
The barman chased Mitchem down in order to attempt a citizens arrest.
As the victim approached the offender, he was punched in the face.
Mitchem dropped the bottle of Jim Beam, causing it to smash on the ground, and then jumped into the passenger seat of a vehicle and fled the scene.
The barman suffered serious injuries requiring plastic surgery to his lip.
Mitchem was wanted on a number of warrants and was eventually arrested in September.
He was released on bail with strict conditions, including he not drive a motor vehicle, abide by a curfew and provide a $5000 surety.
The surety was provided by his mother.
Mitchem breached those conditions on March 11 when he drove his mother's white Mitsubishi Sedan at a fast rate of speed in Warrnambool. Police attempted to intercept the vehicle, which fled the scene.
Mitchem rang his mother and she agreed to report her vehicle stolen in an attempt to deny he was the driver.
And on June 22 this year, he was caught driving at Northpoint Shopping Centre and breaching his bail curfew.
Mitchem's mother, Michelle Gibbs, applied to have the $5000 surety returned but magistrate Franz Holzer refused the application on the grounds he was not satisfied it would be unjust of him to forfeit the money.
Mr Holzer said Mitchem was a "huge community risk".
He said the offending was concerning, particularity for the male victim assaulted outside Macey's Hotel. He showed Mitchem a photo of the man's facial injuries and said: "That's the damage you have done and he will have to look at that in his mirror when he's shaving or doing his hair for the rest of his life".
"That behaviour is outrageous," he said.
"Even if it was not intentional, it was reckless. You can kill people with one punch. It will clearly have a profound impact on the victim."
Mitchem also pleaded guilty to assaulting a woman that was known to him, smashing the windscreen of a car with his fist and punching another inmate to the face while he was in custody.
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