Woman jailed for theft from Needs store

For­mer em­ployee con­spired with friend to steal money and cig­a­rettes

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - PROVINCE -

A for­mer em­ployee of the Needs Con­ve­nience Store on Brack­ley Point Road was sen­tenced Mon­day in pro­vin­cial court to serve three months in jail for theft and con­spir­acy to com­mit theft.

Char­lene Acorn re­ceived iden­ti­cal sen­tences on each of the two charges against her.

She will serve her sen­tence on an in­ter­mit­tent ba­sis on the front end of each week.

Upon com­ple­tion of the cus­to­dial por­tion of her sen­tence, Acorn will spend 18 months on pro­ba­tion.

While on pro­ba­tion she must make resti­tu­tion of $704.50, half the value of the cash and cig­a­rettes taken dur­ing the theft.

She must also pay $200 in vic­tims of crime sur­charges.

Chief Pro­vin­cial Court Judge John Dou­glas banned Acorn from any Needs Con­ve­nience Store.

Dou­glas also pro­hib­ited the ac­cused, who is four months preg­nant, from con­sum­ing any al­co­hol or tak­ing any drugs not pre­scribed by her doc­tor un­til af­ter the birth of her child.

A let­ter of apol­ogy is to be writ­ten to her for­mer em­ployer.

The Crown had asked for a sen­tence in the range of four to six months.

Dou­glas said he would have im­posed a sen­tence in that range were it not for the fact that Acorn is preg­nant and has full-time em­ploy­ment.

Acorn’s de­fence coun­sel had asked for a con­di­tional sen­tence that she could have served in the com­mu­nity un­der house ar­rest.

But Dou­glas de­nied that re­quest be­cause of the se­ri­ous na­ture of the of­fence and the fact Acorn’s ac­tions con­sti­tuted a breach of trust.

Ev­i­dence pre­sented dur­ing her trial in­di­cated Acorn had con­spired with another woman to steal a quan­tity of money from the store and make it look like a rob­bery.

That woman, who has pleaded guilty but is yet to be sen­tenced, showed up on the day in ques­tion, re­ceived a quan­tity of money and cig­a­rettes from Acorn and left the store.

There was an un­der­stand­ing the money would be di­vided up later.

The court was told Acorn needed the money to pay off a debt.

Acorn was not co-op­er­a­tive with po­lice in their in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

She was not co-op­er­a­tive with pro­ba­tion ser­vices ei­ther as they at­tempted to pre­pare a pre-sen­tence re­port for the court.

The Crown noted that Acorn has not ac­cepted re­spon­si­bil­ity for her ac­tions and ex­pressed no re­morse.

It was also noted that Acorn had mis­led po­lice, prompt­ing po­lice to di­vert scarce hu­man re­sources to in­ves­ti­gate the al­leged rob­bery.

De­fence coun­sel noted that Acorn is mak­ing moves in the right di­rec­tion now.

She has stopped us­ing drugs and al­co­hol and wishes to re­ceive coun­selling.

Acorn said she was sorry, that she wasn’t re­ally think­ing at the time.

She told the court she’s in a bet­ter re­la­tion­ship now and wants to be a good mother to her soon-to-be-born child.

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