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Immature teen gets jail

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By Jessica Howard

A 19-year-old who continued to re-offend despite being given a second chance at life has been jailed for six-months.

Ballan resident, Joshua Fuller appeared in the Ballarat Magistrate’s Court on Friday January 13 and Wednesday January 18.

He will spend the next six-months in the Youth Justice Centre after pleading guilty to a number of charges including dangerous driving, reckless conduct endangering serious injury and driving with a suspended license.

The court heard that on November 26 last year the Fuller was caught driving an unregistered ford sedan at 130km/h on Old Ballan Road, near Gordon.

When police attempted to intercept the accused, who held a suspended learners permit, he sped off into the Whipsticks State Forest, increasing his speed to 145km/h and narrowly missing a man who was whipper-snipping on the side of the road.

Fuller had two female passengers in the car at the time, the court heard.

On a separate occasion, Fuller, who is known to police, was intercepted on Halletts Way in Bacchus Marsh.

A tyre, which had been stolen from a McPherson Street towing business on November 2, was located attached to the vehicle.

Fuller spoke briefly with police before fleeing the scene in a westerly direction with no seatbelt on.

The incidents occurred just two months after the accused appeared in the same court following a string of break-ins throughout the Moorabool area.

At the time, he received a community corrections order and what the Magistrate referred to as a “second chance at life” (The MN 04/10/16).

Fuller’s lawyer, Tim Sullivan, referred to his client’s recent behaviour as “appalling” and said the only explanation was the use of the drug ice.

“This (jail) is where he belongs. He is an unacceptable risk to the community,” he said.

“His father tells me of his (Fuller’s) drug use since the age of ten. He hasn’t grown mentally, emotionally or intelligently since he was 16 because he has been under the influence of ice.

“He has fried his young brain and he can’t think for himself”.

Magistrate Ronald Saines agreed Fuller was an immature young offender, adding that he was lucky his actions didn’t result in injury or death.

“If it had, you would be in the County Court facing a sentence of multiple years,” he said.

Fuller was assessed by a representative from the Youth Justice Centre, who deemed the 19-year-old eligible for youth detention.

Upon his release, Fuller will be placed on a 12-month community corrections order with conditions to complete 60-hours of unpaid work.

His driver’s license was disqualified and cancelled for 12 months.

Magistrate Saines said any repeat behaviour would result in a much crueler punishment.

“If you use your opportunity in the community to reoffend I will be dealing with you and we won’t have you on the streets again”.