Time to Quit for man who stole $22,000 in cigarettes

Man who help steal $22,000 worth of cigarettes told it's time to quit.
Man who help steal $22,000 worth of cigarettes told it's time to quit.

THE Quit Smoking campaign obviously had little effect on Toowoomba man Bradley James Walker who admitted to his role in the theft of $22,000 worth of stock from a Ruthven St tobacco store.

The 20-year-old and an associate had gone to the shop in the early hours of April 24 armed with a baseball bat and axe respectively which they used to break in through a glass door, Toowoomba Magistrates Court was told.

Once inside the pair stole a range of cigarettes and associated products and fled.

However, police found the baseball bat and a range of tobacco products when the searched Walker's home days later, the court heard.

He admitted to the burglary, telling police his mate had talked him into it.

Total cost of damage and loss was $27,037 of which the insurance company had paid $21,500, the court heard.

Walker, who was on probation and parole at the time, appeared by prison video link to plead guilty to that offence and to disqualified driving in Toowoomba on March 13, stealing a cigarette lighter from another tobacco store on April 7, and stealing a pair of thongs, lollies and a kitchen appliance from the Yarraman IGA store on July 11.

His solicitor John Davis (MacDonald Law) told the court drugs had been an issue for his client and at the time of the tobacco store burglary Walker instructed he was "completely off his head" and had little recollection of the event.

His client had started smoking marijuana after the death of his father but his drug use escalated to methamphetamine, he said.

However, the 20-year-old had used his time in custody to get clean of drugs, Mr Davis said.

Acting Magistrate Andrew Walker said five pages of criminal history at 20 years of age was a serious criminal history.

He sentenced Walker to two years in jail but ordered he be eligible to apply for release on parole as of January 13 and ordered he pay half restitution of $13,800.

Topics:  burglary cigarettes court editors picks toowoomba

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