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Teen boy in shocking crime spree targeting elderly

The court heard the boy and others would steal a car and crash it during the joyride.
The court heard the boy and others would steal a car and crash it during the joyride.

A 15-YEAR-old Cairns boy has been jailed for committing 55 offences in a shocking two-month crime spree that included targeting the elderly.

"You have shown a complete disregard for the property of others," Children's Court of Queensland Judge Brad Farr SC said.

His offending, between September and November last year, involved 16 burglaries, 11 unlawful use of motor vehicles, seven attempted enter premises, five enter premises, five stealing, six driving without a licence and more.

"You, for your own selfish dishonest purposes, breached the sanctity of people's homes making them feel less safe at home," Judge Farr said.

The court was told the boy was often in company with others. The group would break into homes and steal a car to joy ride around the region and commit more offences.

Eventually the vehicle would be crashed or dumped.

The total cost was not quantified but Judge Farr said it no doubt ran to tens of thousands of dollars.

"One door alone that was damaged cost over $10,000 to repair," he said.

Prosecutor Laura Moore, for the Crown, told the court the boy's disgraceful criminal history already included 76 convictions for similar offending.

"You should be utterly ashamed of yourself," Judge Farr said.

"You have also developed… a pattern of targeting elderly people sometimes in retirement homes.

"No doubt because you have formed the view that they are easy targets, who will put up little resistance if you are caught."

Defence barrister James Sheridan said his client spoke of his remorse just before pleading guilty yesterday, but Judge Farr said it carried "precious little weight" labelling the boy a "recidivist offender" at 15 years old.

"Something this court does not often see," he said.

The court was told he'd had a dysfunctional upbringing.

"In those circumstances it's hardly surprising you have turnout out that way that you have," Judge Farr said.

The boy was sentenced to 18 months detention. Judge Farr said he must serve 60 per cent of term.

However, because he's already spent about eight months in detention, he will be free in just over two months.

He was also placed on a two-year probation order.

Convictions were recorded against 14 of the charges.

Topics:  court crime general-seniors-news police

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