High speed pursuit ends in Grafton
A YAMBA man who cut off an electronic monitoring device while on parole in order to visit his pregnant partner has been jailed for destroying property.
Allan Randolf Walker, 33, pleaded guilty to destroy-damage property and a charge of driving while disqualified when he appeared in Grafton Local Court yesterday afternoon.
According to police facts tendered to court, Walker was granted parole on March 6 on a number of conditions, one of which was that he had to wear an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet at all times.
On March 29 Walker was fitted with the smart tag electronic device at Grafton Community Corrections office, and on a routine home visit conducted on May 28 at 12pm staff from NSW Corrective Services observed Walker was wearing the tag.
However, at about 8pm that night an alert was triggered by the anti-tampering system of the smart tag monitoring device, and staff from the Corrective Services monitoring centre immediately contacted police.
Upon arrival at Walker's home police were unable to locate either Walker or the tag.
Police were actively seeking Walker on this charge and another two warrants when he was arrested in Grafton after allegedly leading police on a high-speed pursuit on August 22.
Appearing in court yesterday, Walker's solicitor Michael Lantis said his client suffered a severe brain injury in 2014 which caused his client to act impulsively and without much forethought.
Mr Lantis said his client believed the parole conditions were unfair, and cut the monitoring bracelet in order to see his pregnant partner.
Magistrate Karen Stafford said the offence was on the higher range of objective seriousness as the monitoring device was a means of allowing people to serve out parole in the community, and there was a need to deter others in a similar situation from damaging their monitoring device.
Walker was sentenced to a prison term of 18 months, with a non-parole period of 12 months.
He will also have to pay $750 compensation to NSW Corrective Services for the damage to the device.
Walker was also sentenced to six months in jail and disqualified from driving for 12 months after pleading guilty to driving while disqualified.
Walker has entered pleas of not guilty to six charges related to the alleged police pursuit and is due to reappear in Grafton Local Court on October 15.