A heavy penalty to protect the public, says magistrate

Week Eight Tutorial Exercise. This response is based on a fictional scenario.

A Lonsdale East woman was convicted of the theft of $8 worth of goods from Greener’s Supermarket at the Lonsdale Magistrates Court yesterday.

Danielle Miller was fined $400 after the magistrate said her version of events was not plausible.

“I find it unacceptable in our society that members of the public have to pay increased prices on goods to cover the cost of those stolen by thoughtless individuals,” he said.

Miller, who had pleaded not guilty, said a flash migraine had affected her vision and caused her to mistakenly place the bacon and cheese in her handbag in May.

“It would be quite an easy mistake, as I was carrying two bags on the same arm,” she said.

But Miller told Constable Nowak she did not know how the goods came to be in her handbag when interviewed at the police station.

Store detective Jamil Rao said Miller told him she had bought the cheese and bacon at another store when she was pulled aside to the manager’s office.

Miller had purchased bread, milk and potatoes from the store.

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