Woman stealing to order: Judge

Invercargill District Court.

A JUDGE believes a pregnant woman who stole tools throughout the Southern region was stealing to order to fund her drug habit.

Shayla Marie Hallett (23), of Lorneville, appeared on Tuesday for sentence in the Invercargill District Court on a charge of burglary, nine charges of shoplifting and one charge of aggravated driving while disqualified.

During the spate of her offending from October to December last year, she stole from hardware stores in Cromwell, Gore, Invercargill and Wanaka.

Judge Jim Large said Hallett was on intensive supervision for historic matters when some of the offending took place, and on court bail when the latter offences occurred.

She had been in custody since December 9 last year, after the last spate of thefts.

The judge said what resonated in Hallett’s letter written to the court, was the insight she had gained during her time in custody.

She talked about how she had been selfish and was totally blind to how much she had wasted her life because of her drug use.

She knew she needed to stop for her unborn baby’s health and wellbeing.

‘“I’m 32 days’ sober and the healthiest I’ve been in three years’,’’ the judge read from the letter.

A report also outlined how Hallett’s alcohol and substance abuse started when she was 10 years old.

She had told the report writer if she had not gone into custody, she would not have stopped offending.

The stealing of tools and the number she had stolen, led Judge Large to draw his own conclusion.

“You were stealing to order, in my view.”

Hallett was sentenced to six months’ jail, disqualified from driving for 12 months and ordered to pay reparation of $7704.93

She would only need to serve one month in prison because of the two months she had already spent in custody. Judge Large granted her leave to apply for home detention.