Woman steals trolley-full of items in front of child

Tahnia Liegh Johnson
Tahnia Liegh Johnson Tahnia Liegh Johnson

A GLADSTONE magistrate told a young woman charged with stealing that she was "absolutely appalled" at her drunk actions that were carried out in the company of a child.

Tahnia Liegh Johnson, 23, pleaded guilty in Gladstone Magistrates Court last week after stealing $300 of items from Coles.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Barry Stevens told the court on May 2 at 7.40pm, Johnson entered Coles with a young person dressed in a high school uniform and filled up reusable shopping bags with $330.80 of items including meat, milk, health, grocery and beauty products before leaving without making any attempt to pay.

When confronted by store officers, Johnson told them she had a receipt, but, following a brief discussion, the items were returned to the store.

Sgt Stevens said when police later spoke to the defendant she "denied stealing the items and showed no remorse".

He added he "personally (didn't) like stealing occurring in front of young children ... (as) adults are role models".

But defence lawyer Jun Pepito said review of CCTV footage showed the child was not actually with his client as she left the store, adding how "embarrassed" she was when she saw what she did while intoxicated.

Pointing out the defendant's age and lack of any similar offences in her history, Mr Pepito asked Magistrate Catherine Benson to show discretion when convicting.

"She has a future ahead of her," Mr Pepito said.

Ms Benson fined the defendant $750, stating she didn't find being drunk "an excuse at all".

"People work hard and save their money to buy the items they need for their family, and for somebody like you to wander in and brazenly fill up your trolley and walk out ... it's utterly unacceptable," she said.

No conviction was recorded.

Topics:  crime gladstonecourt gladstone magistrates court magistrate catherine benson police theft

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