Community

Ipswich personalities get a taste of life behind bars

DOING TIME: Mackinlay and Evangeline Sturges, with Mercy Community Services senior manager Shelly Wall, were “jailed” by police recruit Kyle Bowden.
DOING TIME: Mackinlay and Evangeline Sturges, with Mercy Community Services senior manager Shelly Wall, were “jailed” by police recruit Kyle Bowden. David Nielsen

RENOWNED Ipswich personalities swapped business suits for prison rags to raise more than $10,000 for the PCYC when Riverlink was converted into a temporary lock-up.

Among the public identities trapped behind bars for the Time 4 Kids fundraiser inside the shopping centre food court on Saturday were representatives of local businesses, sporting teams, Ipswich councillors, Member for Ipswich Ian Berry and Member for Ipswich West Sean Choat.

In exchange for their release, prisoners had to raise $500 bail, with all proceeds supporting the Ipswich PCYC's youth development programs.

Llewellyn Motors general manager James Sturges got a taste of the other side of the law, charged with excessive mobile usage by acting judge and QT business columnist Ashley Jones from the University of Southern Queensland.

"I pleaded with him that, before he put me in jail, I was able to walk around the food court and try and raise some money for my bail by doing community service," Mr Sturges said.

"The bail was a pannikin full of coins. I went back to judge Jonesy and he only gave me a small pardon in the lock-up."

It was the first time Mr Sturges had taken part in the event and he was thrilled with the response from the community.

"We are involved in the Breaking the Cycle program, so as a part of our support for the year we organised a vehicle for the PCYC to help the kids get their hours up on their licence so they can get a job," Mr Sturges said.

Sergeant Neale Porter declared the annual "do time to stop youth crime" fundraiser a great success in its third year.

"The vast majority of prisoners met or exceeded their $500 target because a number of them had been collecting throughout the week," he said.

"The money goes directly and wholly towards continuing youth programs in Ipswich.

"These programs give kids the opportunity to make the most of their lives, through opportunities such as the Duke of Edinburgh, crime prevention programs and Breaking the Cycle for disadvantaged youths."

The Ipswich fundraiser was one of 52 events held across Queensland over the weekend with more than $127,000 raised at last tally count on Sunday.

Topics:  fundraiser ipswich pcyc time 4 kids



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