Man Causes $10,000 Worth of Damage to Youth Detention Centre

This story is written for intended publication in the Melbourne Leader on October 7, 2015. 

Image credit: Herald Sun

An 18-year-old man pleaded guilty to causing $10,000 worth of damage to the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre in Parkville, the Melbourne Magistrates court heard yesterday.

Joshua Richards was sentenced to a 12 month good behaviour bond for causing the damage while in remand in August.

Defence lawyer Mr Thomas told the court Richards’ father died five years ago, he has a poor relationship with his mother and has had drug problems since a young age.

Magistrate Franz Holzer said his history in the Children’s Court was “not good”, but he had to be treated as a first time offender in the Magistrates Court.

He said he sentenced Richards to a 12 month good behaviour bond because he was “willing” to give him an “opportunity”.

“But boy, if I were in your shoes, I wouldn’t be coming back before me,” he said.

Richards had threatened staff at the Parkville centre he would “wreak havoc” if not moved to an adult corrections centre.

He destroyed CCTV cameras, broke into the roof and wandered around in the ceiling cavity before being placed into a secure holding cell.

Richards wasn’t prepared to speak to police after the incident.

He was held in the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre for five days before the incident after a prior charge was part heard before the Children’s Court.

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