Supervision orders for fire offences at Rockingham Community First Office

A WOMAN has received two intensive supervision orders for lighting fires at the Rockingham Community First International office.

Krystel Gayle Johnson pleaded guilty to one count of wilful and unlawful damage by fire and one count of wilful and unlawful damage.

Passing sentence in the Supreme Court on Monday, Justice Stephen Hall said the offence happened on May 20.

“You walked straight to the rear office where you started yelling out loud for no apparent reason,” the judge said.

A staff member told Johnson that her appointment would be rescheduled.

“You then picked up three chairs and threw them into the middle of the office, some keyboards and monitors off the table, threw them into the middle of the office, but they were not damaged,” he said. “Due to your aggression and violent behaviour the other occupants left the office, leaving you alone.”

She then walked out and told a staff member she had lit a fire and smoke was seen coming from the office.

“You then used a chair to hit the front entrance glass panel, causing the glass to shatter,” the judge said.

Four small fires had been lit, one in a bin, one in a tissue box on top of a desk and two in the middle of the room on the floor.

Justice Hall said Johnson made full admissions to police of the damage.

“When asked why you had done this you said because you could and because nobody was listening to you, so why should you listen to them.

“Your explanation of the offending is that you had used amphetamines the night before and were still feeling the effects of that drug. You were telephoned by a case worker and told that you had an appointment in 20 minutes’ time.

“You said you could not get there in time, but felt that the person you were speaking to was not interested.

“You say that when you arrived late you were still angry and responded violently when told that the appointment had been cancelled.”

Justice Hall said he had received the 21-year-old’s psychological and psychiatric report.

“Your childhood was, to say the least, unhappy. You grew up in an environment of neglect and emotional deprivation,” he said.

He noted a lack of adequate mental health care had not helped Johnson and he commended her for measures she had taken to help herself.

“To your credit, you have engaged with counselling and the counsellor has reported that you have made rapid gains in addressing the many difficult personal issues that have negatively impacted on your life.

He said she had obtained housing which had helped significantly but she would still need ongoing mental health management. “These offences are serious, but they do not, in my view, require a term of imprisonment,” he said.