Guilty plea to robbing pensioner near bank

HE HELPED rob an elderly pensioner of nearly $2000 but Leon Edward Freeman, 21, decided to skip court rather than face the music last month.

The law caught up with him yesterday, however, when he appeared at the Rockhampton Magistrates Court in police custody.

Police sought out Freeman after he allegedly took part in a violent brawl just after midnight on Tuesday at Paddy's Planet Irish Pub in which a security guard and two patrons were attacked.

Freeman yesterday pleaded guilty to charges of stealing and receiving stolen goods in relation to the $2000 theft and was granted bail on assault and wilful damage charges stemming from the brawl.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Darrell Dalton told the court Freeman had been part of a group of three men who helped steal from the pensioner.

He said the 60-year-old man withdrew the cash from the Commonwealth Bank on January 31 before leaving the building and taking a seat on a park bench outside.

Senior Constable Dalton said Freeman's associate, Damian Ross Accoom, sat beside the man and took the money out of his pocket before fleeing and splitting it with Freeman and another man.

Solicitor Shane Studdert said his client missed an initial court appearance on February 17 because he didn't make arrangements to get from his residence at Mt Morgan.

Magistrate Annette Hennessy ordered Freeman to pay back a third of the stolen money. Freeman will reappear later this year on the brawl charges.

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