A MAN convicted of burglary said he did it to steal marijuana plants so he could grow them for himself.
Jamie Malcolm Pacey pleaded guilty to burglary with intent in dwelling when he appeared at Rockingham Magistrates Court today .
Magistrate Susan Richardson sentenced him to a Community Based Order for 12 months with drug counselling, urine analysis and 50 hours community work, but also granted a spent conviction.
The prosecutor said between February 11 and 17 Pacey attended an address in Wellard and entered the property by removing a flywire screen from a rear window and climbing through the window.
He removed a metal cover from a cooker in the home and was identified by the fingerprints he left on it.
He left the home empty handed.
When arrested on March 8, he admitted to police to breaking in and had thought the address was vacant.
He said he was looking for cannabis plants to steal and grow.
His lawyer said the 24-year-old regretted the “really stupid decision” he had made.
She said he believed the house was abandoned and had been intermittently occupied by squatters.
“It is unlikely he will re-offend as he won’t do anything that stupid again,” she said.
She asked Magistrate Richardson to consider a spent conviction, which the prosecutor opposed.
Magistrate Richardson said burglaries were a problem.
“It is a serious matter to break into anyone’s home whether they are home or not,” she said.
“We have a right to lock-up our homes and leave them without worry of someone entering uninvited.
“It wasn’t open to you; you had to remove a screen to get in.
“This is a progression of seriousness of past offences. There is a need for deterrence.
“It is important that you do something about your drug issue as its bringing you back to court.”
As Pacey had been working for the past ten years Magistrate Richardson granted him a spent conviction.
“It is in the interest of having you employed and a productive member of the community,” she said.