Hinkler Central shopping mall, Bundaberg.
Hinkler Central shopping mall, Bundaberg.

Man ‘embarrased’ after caught stealing groceries

LIVING in a house ripe with drug use with no money, a former Bundaberg man confessed to stealing groceries from Woolworths and says he's working to turn his life around.

Gage Williams pleaded guilty in Rockhampton Magistrates Court last Friday to stealing groceries from Woolworths at Hinkler Central shopping mall in Bundaberg.

Police prosecutor Shayne Studdert said at 1.30pm on June 3, Williams was seen on CCTV wheeling a shopping trolley full of grocery items out of the business, without making any attempt to pay for the items.

Mr Studdert said an employee from the business confronted Williams at his car, where he was putting groceries in the boot, and told him to return the items.

He said Williams gave the employee the trolley with the remaining items and drove away.

He said on August 6 Williams went to Bundaberg Police Station and made full admissions to stealing the grocery items. He told police he did not have enough money to pay for the groceries.

Lawyer Lauren Townsend said Williams was living with his uncle in Bundaberg at the time of the offence.

"He was unemployed and living in a household that was using drugs," Ms Townsend said.

"My client was using cannabis and stealing groceries because he couldn't afford to pay for them.

"He was quite embarrassed when confronted by the security guard loading groceries into his car, so he gave the trolley to the security guard and drove off with some groceries already in the boot.

"He then went to the police station and made full admissions to police."

She said Williams moved to Rockhampton a few months ago to get away from the scene.

She said he was engaging with ATODS, had been placed on the opioid treatment program and was subject to drug testing.

Williams was fined $400.



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