A former Warrnambool man who drove without a licence and stole from a commercial business while on bail has been jailed for seven months.
Robert Chatfield, also known as Robert Kardem, 30, now of Noble Park, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court on Tuesday to driving while disqualified, theft, trespass and committing an indictable offence on bail.
He was jailed for seven months with one day counted as time served.
The court heard on October 14 last year a woman was at her Purnim home when she heard her dogs bark and Chatfield arrived in a silver BMW.
They had a conversation and a police highway patrol unit officer drove past.
The man saw the vehicle and fled out through a back paddock.
Police found that the BMW had been involved in a number of evading police incidents in Warrnambool during the previous couple of days.
The vehicle was impounded and the driver was found to be a disqualified P-plater.
Then on Wednesday last week, Chatfield attended Apco Service Station on Raglan Parade at 1.20am and asked if he could buy a car battery.
There was none available so the man left his name and phone number with a store attendant.
An hour later he jumped the fence of Matko Hire, located about two stores up from service station, and stole a battery from a scissor lift.
The battery was worth $200.
The theft was captured on CCTV.
Chatfield attended Warrnambool police station by appointment on Monday and was subsequently arrested.
Lawyer Xavier Farrelly said his client stole the battery to help jump start a friend's car.
"It wasn't a bright idea considering there was footage at both places (Apco and Matko Hire)," he said.
Mr Farrelly said Chatfield had an extensive criminal history but had recently got his life back on track and had remained abstinent from drugs.
He said his client was cooperative with police and remorseful.
But magistrate Mark Stratmann said Chatfield had a significant and concerning criminal history that included driving without a licence.
"The theft and entry of a private place is also a serious matter," he said.
"It was 2.30am, you broke into a commercial premise and you stole property belonging to another person whilst you were on bail. The gravity of that needs to be met."
Chatfield is also accused of stealing a car from Craigieburn on August 1.
Police allege he was found sitting in the car in the Keysborough Hotel car park on August 4 last year.
The registration of the Holden was suspended and Chatfield allegedly had tools on his lap.
He told police he was having trouble trying to start his car.
Further investigations revealed the vehicle identification number had been tampered with and officers accessed the engine bay to find the identification plates had also been removed.
Paperwork in the glove box identified the vehicle and officers found it was stolen.
Chatfield was arrested, interviewed, charged and bailed.
That bail was revoked on Tuesday and the matter will be heard at a later date.
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