Thief pleads guilty after more than half of charges against him dropped

A YOUNG Ballarat drug addict who targeted cars and sheds has had more than half the charges against him dropped.

Ricky Stewart, 19, appeared in the Ballarat Magistrates Court on Tuesday where he pleaded guilty to the remaining charges of  burglary, theft of a car, unlicensed driving and drugs charges. He was originally charged with 94 offences. 

The court heard Stewart, who had a “full-on” addiction to ice for more than two years, and a co-accused stole more than $10,000 of property from an Alfredton shed earlier this year. 

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Michelle Kilburn said Stewart and a co-accused also broke in and ransacked an Eureka Street business in June, stealing thousands of dollars worth of property. Stewart and a co-accused also broke into a business and stole two vehicles, valued at $40,000.

The court heard Stewart was also responsible for recently smashing car windows.

Magistrate Cynthia Toose said she would not sentence Stewart until a pre-sentence report had been completed but the offending had been repetitive and opportunistic, adding jail could be the only appropriate sentence. Stewart was remanded in custody. He will be sentenced on September 4.