A Warrnambool man who stole from an opportunity shop just days after his release from jail has been released from custody and ordered to undergo treatment for his drug problem.
Ian Roberts, 37, of Moonah Street, appeared in Warrnambool Magistratres Court via video-link on Monday.
He pleaded guilty to theft and trespassing charges.
The court heard Roberts was released from prison on February 15 after serving a sentence for offences of burglary and theft.
Then on February 26, he attended the Koroit Lions Club opportunity shop about 11.30am and used a piece of scrap metal to open a gate and gain access to the rear yard.
He then stole a black suitcase. The trespass and theft was recorded on CCTV footage.
Police released still images of the footage on March 9 and Roberts was subsequently identified.
Then on February 27, Roberts attended Woolworths supermarket on Warrnambool's Raglan Parade and stole a packet of batteries worth $24.
He was arrested on April 9 after police intercepted him riding a pushbike without a helmet on Raglan Parade.
Roberts admitted to stealing the suitcase but denied any knowledge of the supermarket theft.
In a previous court hearing, lawyer Morgan Adams said Roberts was released from custody on February 15 with "little to no support in the community".
He said due to the coronavirus pandemic support services were closed and Roberts found himself homeless.
"The thefts of both the batteries and the suitcase are of particular value to someone who finds himself homeless," Mr Adams said.
On Monday, magistrate Peter Mellas said Roberts had a number of issues to contend with, including social, housing and drug issues.
"Some of them make each other worse," he said.
"Not having housing puts you in a situation where you are trying to live by your wits. Having a drug problem on top of that just makes things worse... You can't make good choices about what you're doing."
Mr Mellas accepted Roberts' offending occurred in the context of him being homeless.
But he said interference with charity shops affected a lot of people.
"It impacts the volunteers involved, it impacts their view of the world and their sense of safety," Mr Mellas said.
"Your actions have consequences."
Roberts was sentenced to 39 days' jail, which he already served in custody on remand.
He was released on a 12-month corrections order with therapeutic conditions targeting his drug problem.
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