Guilty plea to path graf­fiti charges

Pilbara News - - News - Ali­cia Per­era

A Greens can­di­date for the seat of Pil­bara in last month’s State elec­tion has been or­dered to pay al­most $4000 in com­pen­sa­tion and do com­mu­nity ser­vice for spray­paint­ing party slo­gans on City of Kar­ratha foot­paths.

Kar­ratha man Brent McKenna, 61, last Tues­day ap­peared be­fore Kar­ratha Mag­is­trate’s Court, where he pleaded guilty to three counts of dam­ag­ing prop­erty by graf­fiti. McKenna spray-painted Greens party lo­gos, us­ing a sten­cil and green spray paint, on pave­ments out­side the Kar­ratha City Shop­ping Cen­tre, Roe­bourne post of­fice and Wick­ham Newsagency in the early hours of Fe­bru­ary 16.

The court was told a to­tal of 86 tags had been spray-painted and one of the in­ci­dents had been cap­tured on CCTV.

McKenna re­ported to the South Hed­land po­lice sta­tion the next day and pleaded guilty to the charges at an early op­por­tu­nity.

Le­gal Aid lawyer Brooke So­jan told the court McKenna had been un­der sig­nif­i­cant stress dur­ing the cam­paign and had spray-painted the slo­gans out of a feel­ing his party’s mes­sage was be­ing over­shad­owed by oth­ers and he needed to raise its pro­file.

Mag­is­trate Robert Young granted McKenna a spent con­vic­tion, an eight-month com­mu­nity-based or­der and 80 hours of com­mu­nity ser­vice. He was also or­dered to pay $3828 in resti­tu­tion — $2728 to the City of Kar­ratha and $1100 to Wick­ham Newsagency — to cover the cost of re­mov­ing the tags.

The court was told re­moval would be very dif­fi­cult, given the type of spray-paint McKenna had used.

The WA Greens re­leased a state­ment dis­tanc­ing them­selves from McKenna’s ac­tions at the time of the of­fence.

The Greens slo­gans were spray-painted around Kar­ratha City Shop­ping Cen­tre in Kar­ratha.

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