Why man torched car stolen by someone else

“A MINDLESS act of wanton damage” was how a judge described an offender’s car arson act he carried out while on bail for an unlawful use of a motor vehicle.

Cody James Kenneth Muir, 22, pleaded guilty on August 25 in Rockhampton District Court to one count of unlawful use of a motor vehicle and one of arson.

The court heard Muir breached bail by failing to report five times and committing this offence for a charge of unlawful use of a motor vehicle, driving unlicensed and others for allegations still before the courts.

The court heard Muir’s friend turned up at his place with a stolen Mazda CX-5.

The car was stolen during a burglary on Clark St, West Rockhampton, on December 15. Read more here: Stolen Mazda involved in other crimes

Muir drove his friend home, and after she was arrested, he drove the car to Port Curtis and set it on fire using excess petrol.

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The court heard the vehicle’s owner was “fully compensated” through their insurer.

Muir told police he had torched the car because he didn’t want to be associated with it, having heard it was involved in other crimes.

He was high on drugs at the time – something that had been a problem for him since he started smoking marijuana at age 13 and using methamphetamines at 14.

Defence barrister Ross Lo Monaco said his client had issues with substance abuse, as evident in his criminal record, and while he had stopped taking drugs when his daughter was born, he resumed using drugs after the relationship with the girl’s mother broke down two years ago.

Mr Lo Monaco said Muir found out the Mazda had been involved in other crimes after the female companion drove it to his place, damaged.

He said Muir drove her home and sometime later, after she was arrested, he accessed the keys and drove to car to an isolated area where he set it on fire.

Judge Michael Burnett described the arson act as a “mindless act of wanton damage”.

He sentenced Muir to a two-year head sentence, declared 232 days pre-sentence custody served, with immediate parole.



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