Teen jailed for assault, theft

A TEENAGER who stole four bottles of 10-year-old rum, punched a shopping centre security officer and broke into a home and a car, has been jailed for 16 months.

Bruce Peter King, 19, of Avenell Heights, faced Bundaberg Magistrates Court yesterday on eight charges including assault causing bodily harm, three counts of stealing, and two of breaking and entering.

He pleaded guilty to the offences at the previous hearing of his case, where the court heard King had broken into the Tattersalls Hotel on March 21 and stolen four bottles of the aged Bundaberg Rum and a packet of cigarettes.

Each bottle of rum was valued at $80 and barrister Simon Burgess said his client King and several others had gone to Baldwin Swamp to “get drunk”.

Earlier that month, King had gone to the Blockbuster video store in Woongarra St and stolen two DVDs, valued at $33 each, and put them in his pants before leaving with them.

The court was also told King attacked a security officer at a Toowoomba shopping centre on January 1.

King was speaking loudly on a phone in Coles when the officer asked him to use his “inside voice”.

The defendant turned to the man and told him: “This is my inside voice, c**t.”

The officer told King to leave the store and followed him outside, where King punched him in the face, causing a cut and bruising.

“Mr King went back and apologised to the man the following day,” Mr Burgess said.

“The injuries to the officer were fairly minor.”

On December 12, King broke into a Toowoomba home while the occupant was asleep and stole cigarettes, a mobile phone and a laptop.

He then went to the garage and found the owner's car, from which he stole a wireless modem before fleeing.

King was serving three two-month suspended jail sentences at the time of the offences and Mr Burgess said he could not argue that it would be unjust to activate them.

The teenager also pleaded guilty to a charge of breaching bail by not showing up to court.

“He did go – it was a case of him getting to court an hour late and a warrant was issued,” Mr Burgess said.

Magistrate Neil Lavaring sentenced King to 12 months jail for the stealing at the Tattersalls Hotel, nine months jail for the two break and enter offences and three months jail for the stealing of the DVDs and assaulting the security officer, all to be served concurrently.

On top of the 12 months, King will serve a cumulative four-month jail term for failing to appear.

He will be eligible for parole on September 30.

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