‘Are you 11?’: magistrate scolds thief for juvenile revenge theft

CONVICTED FOR REVENGE: A magistrate on Orange Local Court questioned the maturity of a man who broke into a house and stole a television out of revenge. FILE PHOTO

CONVICTED FOR REVENGE: A magistrate on Orange Local Court questioned the maturity of a man who broke into a house and stole a television out of revenge. FILE PHOTO

A man who stole a TV and DVD player to get back at someone was scolded by magistrate Alison Viney in Orange Local Court on Monday for his juvenile behaviour.

Joshua Donnellan, 25, of Matthews Avenue, stole the Sanyo flatscreen TV and DVD player after climbing through a window of a house in Fox Avenue and then hiding the items at a public primary school on December 29, 2016.

Ms Viney was unimpressed by Donnellan’s explanation for the theft and sentenced him to a seven-month suspended jail sentence with supervision by community corrections.

“The juvenile explanation of it about the get back, seriously, what are you 11?” she asked.

“You broke into someone’s home, stole something they treasured and hid it, you need to grow up.

“You’ve got a clearly unimpressive Magistrates’ Early Referral Into Treatment (MERIT) report, there are things that they recommended but you are not bothering with.

“If you don’t address these issues on a permanent basis, quite frankly you would be taken out of the community [and sent to jail].”

Donnellan was represented by solicitor Rebecca McIlveen who said he went off the rails and turned to alcohol following a family tragedy.

She said her client stole the TV because the person who owned the TV had previously threatened him.

“There was no attempt to deride fiscal benefit, it was a kind of revenge,” Ms McIlveen said.

“His intention was for the fellow to return to find the TV taken from the house.”

She said at the time of the offence her client was also intoxicated.

Donnellan broke into the house by removing a loose flyscreen and opening an unlocked window.

He was seen by a witness returning to his house with the stolen goods.

Police visited his house to question him about the break and enter on December 30, 2016, and he admitted hiding the items, then retrieved the items from the school and handed them to police. 

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