Monto theft case

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS -

A DOOMED at­tempt to avoid small town gos­sip was the cat­a­lyst that caused a young Monto woman to steal a preg­nancy test kit from a lo­cal su­per­mar­ket.

A mag­is­trate hear­ing the case of the woman charged with steal­ing was told by prose­cu­tor Sgt Barry Stevens that she re­moved the $10 preg­nancy test kit from its box in Food­works in Monto and se­creted it on to her­self.

The woman, aged in her 20s, then put the empty box back on the shelf.

She pleaded guilty in the Mag­is­trates Court to steal­ing the do-it-your­self kit on March 10.

Sgt Stevens said the woman was ob­served by staff to be spend­ing con­sid­er­able time in the store and staff later scru­ti­nised CCTV footage.

This showed her re­mov­ing the con­tents from the box, se­cret­ing the items on her body be­fore hid­ing the box on a shelf in an­other aisle.

In an in­ter­view with po­lice some weeks later Sgt Stevens said she re­vealed that she had been too em­bar­rassed to buy the kit.

“She stole it as she didn’t want the staff to have knowl­edge of her per­sonal busi­ness,” Sgt Stevens said.

“She is now banned from the su­per­mar­ket.”

Mag­is­trate Me­lanie Ho said she could un­der­stand that she was em­bar­rassed and not think­ing straight at the time in the thought that she might be preg­nant.

Ms Ho said be­ing banned from the su­per­mar­ket in the small town was pun­ish­ment in it­self.

“It is a mis­take you made in a small town. No doubt gos­sip will go around the place in any event.”

And in re­ply to the ob­vi­ous ques­tion, the woman told the mag­is­trate that she was not preg­nant.

Ms Ho said the woman didn’t have any crim­i­nal his­tory and she would not record a con­vic­tion. No pun­ish­ment was or­dered.

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