‘I’m sorry and seek­ing help’

Taranaki Daily News - - News - DAVID BUR­ROUGHS

A heav­ily preg­nant woman stole from a staffroom while pre­tend­ing to be en­rolling her daugh­ter in school.

On Septem­ber 20, Court­ney El­iz­a­beth Young, 30, went to St Joseph’s Pri­mary School in Waitara, North Taranaki, and asked for an en­rol­ment form for her daugh­ter.

She was given one, the en­rol­ment process was ex­plained to her and she gave false de­tails for both her­self and her daugh­ter.

She then left the re­cep­tion area but made her way to the back of the school to a staff-only area.

When a staff mem­ber found her there, Young, who was 38 weeks preg­nant, said she was wait­ing to dis­cuss the en­rol­ment with the prin­ci­pal. The staff mem­ber made Young a cof­fee and went to try and find the prin­ci­pal for her.

While she was away, Young picked up the woman’s purse and com­puter bag and a first aid kit be­fore go­ing into a nearby class­room and tak­ing a set of keys and a wal­let con­tain­ing $170 in cash that were in the purse. She then threw away the purse be­fore scarper­ing with the keys, wal­let, com­puter bag and first aid kit.

In the New Ply­mouth Dis­trict Court on Thurs­day Young pleaded guilty to one charge of theft.

‘‘The stolen mat­ters were the prop­erty of the vic­tim and val­ued at about $2,500,’’ the sum­mary of facts said. All the items were later re­cov­ered by po­lice, ex­cept for the $170 cash.

Young de­clined a lawyer when she ap­peared in court and when Judge Kevin Glubb asked if there was any­thing she wished to say, Young said while she still dis­puted the out­stand­ing $170, there was no ex­cuse for her ac­tions and apol­o­gised for steal­ing the items.

‘‘I’ve just been go­ing through a bit of a hard time, sir,’’ she said.

She said she was 38 weeks preg­nant and had en­rolled in cour­ses to help her­self.

‘‘I gen­uinely am sorry and I’m seek­ing help for my ac­tions,’’ she said. ‘‘I want to make a bet­ter fu­ture for my son.’’

She said she would be able to pay repa­ra­tion and would also be able to do com­mu­nity work with the sup­port of her wha¯ nau, who could look af­ter her chil­dren.

Glubb said Young had breached the trust of the staff mem­ber who took her at face-value.

He sen­tenced her to 60 hours of com­mu­nity work, 10 months su­per­vi­sion and or­dered her to pay $170 in repa­ra­tion.

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