A MAN who was refused drugs by a doctor went to a pharmacy and stole prescription medication before doing a runner from police, a court has heard.
Then in a separate incident, Elliot Rhodes, from Ballarat, stole clothes including underwear from a charity shop, then tried to escape security guards on foot.
The 28-year-old appeared in Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday, where he was jailed for four months. Having already served 106 days, Rhodes will be due for release in two weeks.
The court heard Rhodes went to the Eureka Medical Centre last February where a doctor refused his request for medication.
Rhodes then went to the pharmacy downstairs and, when a staff member turned her back, grabbed 10 packets of Alprazolam. But the worker caught him, grabbing his hand and causing him to drop the drugs. Rhodes then made a run for it upon police being called, and was eventually detained in Moyle Street.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Michelle Burnett said that five days later Rhodes was caught shoplifting from the Salvation Army store in the Bridge Mall.
She said he stole two pairs of jeans, a t-shirt and a packet of underwear, concealing the items under his t-shirt.
Then when a security guard started following Rhodes he threw the items beside a tree and made a run for it, only to be intercepted by police soon after.
Defence lawyer Mike Wardell urged the court to impose a rehabilitative order, saying his client had a 28-page prior history and “rampant drug addiction”.
“He can survive okay on the inside but it’s how he survives on the outside that’s the issue,” Mr Wardell said. “We’re dealing with someone with multiple and complex needs.”
But magistrate Andrew Capell wasn’t convinced, saying Rhodes had had plenty of opportunities for rehabilitation. Rhodes pleaded guilty to six charges including attempted theft, possessing a drug of dependence and being a known thief loitering in a public place.