Youth 15, didn’t learn from judge

LENIENCY shown by a NSW District Court judge to a Wodonga youth last year was squandered, with the teen committing a further string of offences.

The youth, then 15, was involved in a pack bashing in Dean Street, Albury, where a man, 18, was attacked in front of his mother while shocked pedestrians looked on.

Magistrate Tony Murray described a group of eight youths as “a pack of hyenas” when sentencing the youth to an 11-month control order with four months to serve.

But he appealed and Judge Stephen Walmsley in the District Court at Albury last August reduced the minimum term to two months which allowed the youth’s immediate release.

The youth, now 16, appeared for sentencing in a Victorian Children’s Court yesterday on charges of attempting to commit an indictable offence, four counts of theft, two burglaries, nine counts of obtaining property by deception, retaining stolen goods and recklessly causing injury.

Magistrate John Murphy had been told the youth was on parole from charges in NSW.

Mr Murphy was told the youth owed nine months and that NSW authorities were aware of the youth’s repeated breaches.

“They will breach him and he will have to serve the whole nine months,” solicitor Mario Vaccaro said.

Mr Murphy questioned whether authorities in NSW will make an application to have the youth extradited.

Without the pending custody hanging over the youth’s head, Mr Murphy said he would have imposed a nine-month sentence.

But instead he imposed an aggregate sentence of three months to be served in a youth justice centre.

“Look, lad, you are 16. It’s time you woke up,” Mr Murphy told him.

The youth was considered the instigator of the pack attack last year.

The incident happened about 11.40am on April 12 after the group followed the man and his mother from the Myer Centre to Dean Street.

Both the mother and son were taunted before the attack and they sought refuge in a shop before the youths ran off.

Members of the group were heard by pedestrians boasting about their exploits.