Thief released from jail 12 days into four month sentence

A 26-year-old Ballarat man had his prison sentence overturned in the County Court sitting at Ballarat yesterday despite breaching his community correction order.

Brett Ruxton was sentenced to four months in prison for breaching his CCO conditions in the Ballarat  Magistrates’ Court but has been released after his sentence was revised by Judge Michael McInerney. 

Ruxton was serving time in prison for failing to comply with the conditions of a CCO by failing to report to correction officers. 

The original offences that saw him placed on the CCO include theft and conduct the judge described as “outrageous and terribly dangerous.”

Defence attorney Fran Brennan said her client should not serve his time in prison due to a chronic medical condition. 

The court heard Ruxton suffers from mild to moderate haemophilia which causes him both internal and external bruising and bleeding.   

He has served 12 days of his four month sentence but on the second day of his detention, Ruxton had to be taken to St Vincent’s hospital as the handcuffs he was wearing caused uncontrollable bleeding on his wrists. 

Judge McInerney decided to give Ruxton another chance to comply with a new CCO but made it clear he is expected to meet his reporting obligations. 

“I am giving you another chance,” the judge said. 

“As far the correction offers are concerned you should be in jail, you spat in their face but am giving you one more chance.

"Turn up for your appointments and do what you are supposed to do"

Ruxton was supported in court by his mother and Ms Brennan said her client had made efforts to get his life back on track. 

“This is his first time ever in custody and he wants to turn his life around,” Ms Brennan said. 

The judge has released Ruxton from custody and fined him a total of $200 for breaching the conditions of the original CCO with six months to pay and started him on a new CCO. 

Judge McInerney said he was satisfied Ruxton had taken on board what was said and this time will comply with the CCO conditions. 

“Despite the negative view of the department [of corrections] it is my view to grant it and I have told him what will happen if he is so bold to act in the same way as before.”