An Ararat man received a prison sentence after being convicted of several offences including property damage, making a threat over the phone, and multiple shoplifting incidents.
Christopher Bristow, 33, appeared in Ararat Magistrates' Court on Friday via prison link and pleaded guilty to several charges occurring between 2019 and 2021.
At 12.05pm on Monday, October 28, 2019, Bristow entered the Ararat Woolworths and was observed on CCTV footage taking a carton of Oak Milk without paying.
The next day, at 1pm on October 29, Bristow was observed shoplifting a green reusable groceries bag, after which he remained in a store for five minutes without making an attempt to pay for any items.
At 10pm on October 30, Bristow again attended the Ararat Woolworths and was identified by the store manager. Bristow was taken to the station by Ararat police and elected to make no comment during an interview.
At 3pm on May 29, 2020, Bristow entered the Ararat Reject Shop with a grey backpack and asked a staff member for help choosing kids items. After being shown the selection of kids items in stock, Bristow loaded them into the backpack and left the store.
He did not respond when asked to return to the store with the items and was observed on CCTV footage leaving the car park.
His car's registration number was observed by a passer-by. The items valued $103.
At 10.41pm on November 1, 2020, Bristow sent an email to his partner claiming he had covered the house they lived in with 20 litres of petrol and was going to burn it down.
Police attended the address and found Bristow uninjured and the house not burnt. He was then taken to Ararat police station where he made a full admission of sending the text message to strike fear in the victim.
At 10pm on May 21, 2021 police were called to an Ararat address after a woman noticed Bristow exiting a car at the front of her property.
Bristow kicked the woman's fence, causing property damage to a panel while yelling "you rats, you dogs, I am going to kill you all."
He was later intercepted by police walking down Murphy Street, and taken to Ararat police station where he said he had not intended to cause the property damage.
On June, 26, 2021, Bristow attended Ararat Aldi and put several items down his pants before leaving. The items valued at $20.
On July 16, 2021, He attended Ararat BWS and left the store with a bottle of Southern Comfort concealed in his front hoodie pocket. He was observed on CCTV footage.
The next day Bristow was arrested by Ararat police in the same clothes he was wearing during the theft. He remained in custody up until his appearance in court.
Bristow's defense counsel provided a submission stating he suffered impaired awareness as a result of a brain injury that occurred in 2014.
The court was told Bristow had received the injury from a car crash, and had since required a level of supervision for day-to-day tasks.
Magistrate Jonathan Klestadt accepted Bristow's condition but said it did not excuse his criminal behaviour.
"You recognise what you did was the wrong thing and you ended up in jail because you weren't able to change the behaviours you were engaging in, particularly taking from shops," Mr Klestadt said.
"I accept that life is more difficult for you than other people because of your injuries, but that doesn't mean law does not apply to you.
"You need to be careful in the future to do what you know to be right."
Bristow was given a 27 day prison sentence which was recognised as already being served.
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