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Teenager turns down Magistrate's help, fined more than $2000

Gladstone Courthouse.
Gladstone Courthouse. Brenda Strong

A 19-YEAR-OLD Gladstone man has been fined over $2000 for committing a series of offences over the past year including stealing and drug driving whilst on his Learner's permit.

On Tuesday, Gladstone Magistrates Court heard James Douglas Ivan Dunstan had breached a probation order in February after he was caught trespassing on an empty warehouse.

Police prosecutor acting Senior Constable Balan Selvadurai said when police discovered the defendant on the private property, the warehouse smelled strongly of marijuana.

He said police found a set of scales, a bowl and some scissors inside too.

But the court heard the breach wasn't the first stain on the teen's court-ordered probation, with the defendant failing to report and failing drug testing on multiple occasions.

Snr Const Selvadurai said the defendant's next offence occurred some months later on June 22, when Dunstan stole a 100-pack of No-Doz tablets worth $12.10 from Chemist Warehouse in Clnton.

Then, on August 11, police submitted Dunstan to a roadside drug test while on his Ls, which came back positive. One month later, Dunstan was intercepted by police again and was this time caught driving on a suspended licence.

When questioned, the defendant said he didn't know his licence was suspended.

The court was told the most recent offence was committed on November 23 at Leading Edge Electronics in Gladstone.

Snr Const Selvadurai said Dunstan stole a Toshiba portable hard drive worth $159, which was never recovered by police.

When asked whether or not he wanted probation to help rehabilitate him, Dunstan vigorously shook his head.

Magistrate Melanie Ho said the young defendant's "response to (his current) probation was appalling" and pointed out he already had a two-page history under his belt.

However, Dunstan still refused her offer.

In addition to the hefty fine, Dunstan was ordered to pay restitution for the stolen items.

A conviction was recorded.

Topics:  crime drug driving gladstonecourt gladstone magistrates court learner's permit magistrate melanie ho police stealing



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