A FORMER drug addict has managed to turn his life around and is now focused on a career in law enforcement.
A FORMER drug addict has managed to turn his life around and is now focused on a career in law enforcement.

Former drug addict's aspirations to join police

A FORMER drug addict has managed to turn his life around and is now focused on a career in law enforcement.

Lachlan James McDonnell, 21, pleaded guilty on Wednesday in Rockhampton Magistrates Court to one count of burglary and three of theft.

The court heard the offences took place in Brisbane in November and January with McDonnell checking himself into rehabilitation after the January offences before relocating to Yeppoon where he doesn't know anyone but his parents.

Police prosecutor Jess King said McDonnell broke into a Brisbane home on January 13 about 5am while the owner was on holiday by placing a ladder to the garage window, entering, moving bottles around and ransacking her car.

She said a neighbour heard noise and went to find out what was going on, only to discover a drug influenced McDonnell in the street.

Ms King said McDonnell told the witness he was jogging past as he tried to locate his grandfather's house and had seen a young man hide behind a bin.

She said McDonnell left but police located him nearby and took him into custody.

Ms King said he had a set of keys on him that were for the vehicle in the garage.

McDonnell stole computer accessories from Officeworks on November 23 and fuel from a Brisbane service station on November 10.

The defendant represented himself in court.

McDonnell apologised for his behaviour and said he had a history of mental health and substance abuse issues.

He said after his arrest in January he admitted himself into a two-week detox program at the Royal Brisbane Hospital and then to Logan House Residential Rehabilitation centre where he stayed for three months instead of the usual six weeks.

McDonnell said while he was there, he worked as the kitchen/catering manager and liaison between staff and clients.

He said he had moved to Yeppoon to live with his parents, "a new town for me", and attended regular psychologist and support group meetings.

"I lost everything," he said.

McDonnell said he had been working in real estate after high school when he became addicted to drugs.

He said he lost his job, lost his career in real estate and lost his family due to drugs.

"Since entering rehab, I've managed to gain that back," McDonnell said.

He said he wanted to study law at university or follow in his grandfather's footsteps of being a police officer.

Despite four prior sentences, Magistrate Cameron Press took into account McDonnell's youth, his rehabilitation efforts and career aspirations when he sentenced him to an 18-month probation order and 150 hours of community service. No convictions were recorded.



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