CRIME NOT AN ES­SEN­TIAL

Al­leged thief cops Covid-19 penalty:

Central and North Burnett Times - - FRONT PAGE - SAM TURNER sam.turner@cnbtimes.com.au

AN AL­LEGED camp­ing thief has been ap­pre­hended by po­lice and slapped with a Covid-19 in­fringe­ment.

A QPS spokesman said about 1.40pm on April 10, a man was spot­ted by a mem­ber of the pub­lic al­legedly car­ry­ing stolen items from the Gayn­dah Fruit­grow­ers Mitre 10 Fish­ing and Out­door Camp­ing store.

“It will be al­leged a man was ob­served by a mem­ber of the pub­lic car­ry­ing two air mat­tresses, two sleep­ing bags, and an esky with the tags still dan­gling off them walk­ing to­wards Bar­row St, Gayn­dah,” he said.

“Po­lice were called and at­tended the Cap­per St busi­ness where a num­ber of lou­vres were found to be bro­ken.”

A 39-year-old Gold Coast man was later lo­cated nearby and ar­rested by po­lice.

He was charged with break and en­ter, bur­glary, breach of bail of­fences, and breach­ing a pub­lic health di­rec­tive.

He is due to face Gayn­dah Mag­is­trates Court on Au­gust 7.

Gayn­dah of­fi­cer in charge Sergeant Don Auld said it was the first coro­n­avirus in­fringe­ment the sta­tion’s of­fi­cers had handed out, and it would cost the 39-year-old man $1334.

“You’re only al­lowed to go out for those es­sen­tial rea­sons from your home ad­dress,” Sgt Auld said.

“His home is in Elanora on the Gold Coast, and his es­sen­tial rea­son can’t be to go out to com­mit a crime.”

Sgt Auld said he wanted to stress to the pub­lic that the Covid-19 re­stric­tions needed to be fol­lowed, and peo­ple who didn’t fol­low them would cop ex­or­bi­tant fines.

“Make sure you’re only leav­ing the house for es­sen­tial rea­sons, and keep look­ing at the health di­rec­tives,” he said.

“There’ve been in­ci­dences in town where peo­ple are gath­er­ing in num­bers greater than 10, and it’s just not on.”

Sgt Auld went on to say there were par­ties still be­ing held on the week­ends, and of­fi­cers would be look­ing to take ac­tion against those who were con­tra­ven­ing Covid-19 re­stric­tions.

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