Wooloweyah resident Tim Seaman with his car that was returned after being stolen before Christmas.
Wooloweyah resident Tim Seaman with his car that was returned after being stolen before Christmas.

Guilt-ridden burglar

THE thief who nicked Tim Seaman’s car and loaded it with $9000 worth of TVs, stereos, computers and wallets from three houses in Wooloweyah wrote a four-page letter of heartfelt apologies to a court magistrate in a bid to have his case finalised on the spot.

Ashley Hazeldine, 35, pleaded guilty on Monday at the Lismore Local Court to seven charges including three counts of break and enter, three counts of disposing of stolen property and stealing a red Subaru at Wooloweyah on December 17.

When the disability pensioner was arrested by police at a Lismore campground on Christmas Eve, he was still using the stolen car as his own vehicle, but had sold all the other items.

Through his lawyer, Hazeldine stated that he suffered anxiety and wanted the matter finalised to avoid the further anxiety of a delayed hearing.

In the forthright letter submitted as evidence to the court, Hazeldine stated:

“I take this opportunity to give my heartfelt apologies to the people I have disappointed through my disgusting and disgraceful behaviour.

“I understand right from wrong and admit my crimes were very, very wrong and although I am scared and sad that I’m in prison amongst these people, I believe that this is where I deserve to be for my crimes.”

His lawyer, Ben Cochrane, said that the letter was articulate, direct and showed insight.

“He is very eager for a court result and to get on serving his custodial sentence,” Mr Cochrane said.

However, after reading the letter, Magistrate Nicholas Reimer said he would not sentence Hazeldine until a pre-sentence report was done. The case was adjourned to February 1.

Hazeldine has been remanded in custody and was refused bail.



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