HARRY BRUCE

Game of spotlight proves expensive

SIX friends had no idea playing an "innocent" childhood game could land them in so much trouble.

Aged 17 and 18, the group decided to catch up for a game spotlight.

The problem was they decided to play at night on school property.

Their torchlight caused concern for a member of the public, who called police.

Officers arrived and intercepted three people on the Mackay North State High School grounds about 8.45pm on December 14.

The other three were tracked down by the dog squad nearby at Norris Rd.

The court was told none of the six had a criminal history, it was their first appearance in court.

"I had no idea we'd get in this much trouble," one said.

Another had initially told police they were just walking through the grounds to go to the nearby BMX facility.

However, he contacted the police and wanted to revise his statement, prosecutor Michael Ball said.

He needed to get out of the house so he and his friends decided to meet at the high school for a game of "spotlight".

During their game, he saw torchlight that didn't belong to any of his friends and they all ran.

Several of the six told police they didn't know it was illegal to be on school property without permission.

Their innocent game has cost them each $232.10.

"(We) had no intention of breaking the law," one said.

Self-represented, all pleaded guilty to the charge.

Magistrate Ross Risson accepted their purpose for being on school property was "innocent".

However, he said they should not have been there without permissions.

They were fined $125 each, plus the mandatory offender levy. Convictions were not recorded.


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