Father of 6 who stole while on drugs jailed for 7 months

A DIRRANBANDI man faces seven more months in jail after he was caught stealing on the two separate occasions, which he claims was done in a drug-fuelled haze.

Trent Jason Applebee, 33 appeared via video link in St George Magistrates Court on February 18 to face two charges of stealing and one of breaching bail.

Police prosecutor sergeant Heather Whiting told the court that on August 16, police received a call from staff at St George Machinery Centre at 10.45am which said Applebee was standing at a shelf and was seen to take a knife, walk outside and then return to put it back on the shelf.

"On September 9, at 6pm Sunshine Mitre 10 alerted police that at 3.45pm on that day the defendant was seen on CCTV to take off his jumper and backpack and put a spanner set into his bag," she said.

"He then went to front counter saying he needed help with directions. He then left the store. The defendant told police claims that he was not going to pay for the items were not true.

"On August 16, he had entered into a bail undertaking to appear in court in the St George Magistrates Court on September 9. He consequently failed to appear on the date. On September 10 he told police he had not seen his family and that was why he had not attended court."

Solicitor Ross Finlayson told the court Applebee had six children, all aged under eight.

"The children are currently living with their mother in Dirranbandi. He has a mother living in Brisbane and three sisters however one was killed in a plane crash in 2019," he said.

"This affected him badly and he also has mental health issues. His ambition is to get a job in St George to support his family.

"He was on drugs at time of offences. He did take an item from one business and went outside, but then returned and put it back."

Mr Finlayson said Applebee had not seen his children or partner for a long time.

Applebee addressed the court, he said he was deeply sorry for his crimes and did not intend to repeat his mistakes.

He pleaded guilty to all charges.

Magistrate Tracy Mossop said she had taken into account Applebee's pleas of guilty, as well as his mental health.

"However, the two stealing offences on September 9 were some three days after you had appeared in court," she said.

"For each of three offences I sentence you to six months' jail and order they be served concurrently. You have already served 104 days with respect to your suspended sentence and I order you serve the balance of that order - seven months. This will also be served concurrently from today."

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