Liquor Bottles On A White Background
Liquor Bottles On A White Background

Why Mackay mum of three was jailed over $26 bottle of booze

A Mackay mum of three has been jailed for her 19th dishonesty offence.

“Keep your sticky fingers to yourself and don’t knock off other people’s gear,” Magistrate Damien Dwyer said.

A court heard Cassandra Rose Priestley’s criminal history had entries for stealing and petty theft charges dating back 10 years.

Most recently the 35 year old was busted stealing a $26 bottle of bottle of alcohol from a bottle-o in Bundaberg before she moved to the Cannonvale area, then Mackay.

Mr Dwyer asked why she should not receive jail as a penalty.

A mum of three has been told to keep her “sticky fingers” to herself after she fronted court for her 19th dishonesty offence.
A mum of three has been told to keep her “sticky fingers” to herself after she fronted court for her 19th dishonesty offence.

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Defence solicitor Ashley Reynolds told Mackay Magistrates Court the woman had been involved in a domestic violence relationship.

But Mr Dwyer pointed out the woman had also been jailed for domestic violence offences.

Ms Reynold’s said her client had taken steps since moving to the Mackay and Whitsunday region including taking part in a Choosing Change program.

Ms Reynold’s said her latest offence involved a small amount of alcohol and argued for a community-based order like probation, which would offer supervision.

Mr Dwyer said Priestley had had “plenty of opportunities” over the years to get help.

“I’m looking at sending her to prison,” he said.

“Enough is enough.”

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Mr Reynolds argued for a wholly suspended penalty, which would act as a deterrent.

“This is the 19th time you have been before the court … for offences of dishonesty,” Mr Dwyer said.

“Nineteen times.

“You have trouble with grog, you think you can just go a knock off a bottle of rum.

“This community and this court has had enough.”

The court heard Priestley had breached probation twice and community service.

“More recently you have had the opportunity of parole and again you continue to steal,” Mr Dwyer said.

Priestley pleaded guilty to stealing and was jailed for two months, which was wholly suspended for two years.

She was ordered to pay $26 restitution. A conviction was recorded.

“You’re going to be your own jailer now … If you go and pinch anything in the next two years you run a very real risk of … going to (jail),” Mr Dwyer said.

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