’Breathtaking stupidity’ leads dad to miss daughter’s birth
A 23-year-old who put his "bare-headed" passenger's life in danger when he drove a stolen motorbike at excessive speed has missed the birth of his daughter while behind bars.
Jesse William Jones pleaded guilty in the Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Tuesday to entering a premise with intent, unlawful possession of a motor vehicle, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, driving without a licence disqualified by a court order and unlawful use of a motor vehicle.
Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin told the court Jones, along with a group of others, forced entry into a Coolum shed on January 8 where several motorbikes were stolen.
Mr McLaughlin said Jones was "very lucky" to be charged with unlawful possession with intent to deprive rather than stealing after a bike was found at his residence the day after.
He said the charge suggested Jones had only "borrowed" the bike.
After pleading guilty to entering with intent and unlawful possession, Jones was caught driving a motorbike that had been stolen by an unknown person down a dirt road at excessive speed on April 14.
The passenger was not wearing a helmet at the time.
Mr McLaughlin said the "potential for disaster" was high.
"If you had an accident the passenger could have been killed," he said.
Police prosecutor Rebecca Lambert said Jones had nine pages of criminal history and was previously sentenced to 12 months in prison with an immediate parole release date in 2018 after he was the passenger in a stolen vehicle.
"His traffic and criminal history show a distinct lack of compliance to traffic laws and previous orders of the court," she said.
"Despite his age he has now reached a point where the only sentence available to your honour is a sentence of imprisonment."
Jones's lawyer Jacob Pruden agreed a term of imprisonment was in range but suggested an immediate parole eligibility date.
Mr Pruden said his client, who was on parole when the offences occurred, was unable to meet his newborn daughter and had a young cousin die while he was in custody.
He said the birth of Jones' daughter changed him and he was determined to set a better example than what his father gave him.
Mr McLaughlin said Jones' actions were "breathtaking in their stupidity" and told him to look at what he had done to himself.
He sentenced Jones to a year in prison and allowed an immediate parole eligibility date.
Jones was also disqualified from driving for two years.