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- Unreported Judgment
R v SGB QCHC 21
CHILDRENS COURT OF QUEENSLAND
R v SGB  QChC 21
Application for sentence review
Childrens Court at Mackay
26 July 2019
23 July 2019
Application allowed. Sentence of 100 hours community service is reduced to 30 hours. Sentence otherwise to remain.
CRIMINAL LAW – APPEAL AGAINST SENTENCE – SENTENCING OF JUVENILES – where the applicant child was 13 years old at time of offending and 14 at sentence –where the child pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation and community service – where the child is now attending school full time – whether the period of community service imposed was manifestly excessive
D Law for the Applicant
M Whelan for the Respondent
Legal Aid Queensland for the Applicant
Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (Qld) for the Respondent
- The applicant was sentenced on 10 May 2019 in relation to two offences of enter dwelling and commit an indictable offence, one offence of enter dwelling with intent by break in company, one offence of enter dwelling and commit indictable offence, one of stealing, two of wilful damage and four of enter premises and commit indictable offence. He was sentenced to 9 months probation and 100 hours community service. Convictions were not recorded.
- He was 13 years of age at the time of the offences and 14 at sentence. He pleaded guilty. At the time of the offences, he was subject to a 6 month probation order. Of the 11 offences, one was committed on 14 September 2018 and all the others were committed within a fortnight from 14 November to 1 December 2018.
- At the time of sentence he had not been charged with any fresh offences and he had been complying with his bail conditions which included a curfew. It was submitted that he was expelled from school in November the year before and started hanging around with older family members and committing offences. A report which was tendered at the hearing indicated that his mother had moved him to Sarina to ensure that his ability to engage in antisocial behaviour was reduced.
- Since moving to Sarina he has started training with the Sarina Crocs football club of which his brother was a member. His brother and his friends are law abiding citizens. He has had contact with the Elders as a result of court processes and they have been driving out to see him at Sarina. He felt shame about his offending.
- It was submitted by both parties at sentence that community service was appropriate in this case. His Honour indicated that a probation order was also appropriate. There was no suggestion at this review that the child should not have performed some community service or that a further period of probation was inappropriate. The chief complaint is that the amount of community service is excessive in the circumstances.
- At the time of the offending he was not in school and unable to play sport because his sport was associated with his schooling. This absence of structure left him with time on his hands. He was willing to recommence schooling in Year 9 at Sarina State High School and was involved in numerous pro-social activities at the time of sentence, including spending time at Sarina Youth Centre, involvement with Sarina Miller House and the Sarina Crocs under 14 rugby league team. His criminal history whilst relevant was not extensive and he was, of course, a very young boy.
- It is conceded by the crown that the amount of hours imposed (being the maximum amount of community service) was excessive in the circumstances. This is particularly in light of the fact, as the crown outlines, that he is now attending mainstream schooling 5 days a week, he is involved with the rugby team and trains on Tuesdays and Thursdays and plays games on Saturdays, he attends the Boys to Men program every Friday through school and therefore has little time to complete the 100 hours of community service.
- I accept the submissions made by the applicant and supported by the crown that the community service hours were excessive given his current commitments and his age. The application is granted, the community service hours are reduced from 100 hours to 30 hours. The remainder of the sentence remains.
- Published Case Name:
R v SGB
- Shortened Case Name:
R v SGB
 QCHC 21
26 Jul 2019