Thief steals nuggets, flavoured milk and $10 from fish and chip shop

UPDATE | Matthew McKinnon has been warned he faces more prison time if he reoffends.

McKinnon, who pleaded guilty to a number of theft and burglary offences, and breach of a community corrections order, returned to the Ballarat Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday morning for sentencing.

Magistrate Peter Reardon gave McKinnon one last chance to comply with a community corrections order (CCO), but warned him any further slip-ups would not be tolerated.

“… I expect 100 per cent compliance,” Mr Reardon said.

“You (ignore a CCO) at your own peril.

“Come back before me with similar offending and you will go to jail.”

McKinnon was convicted and sentenced to 109 days imprisonment, which he has already served.

McKinnon will be released from custody today, but he will immediately begin an 18-month CCO which has conditions to complete rehabilitation for drug and alcohol abuse and offender behaviour programs aimed at reducing reoffending.

He will also need to complete the original CCO he had breached.

McKinnon’s lawyer, Wendy Duncan, told the court on Wednesday her client was determined to “better himself” and not go back to using drugs.

EARLIER, TUESDAY | A 21-year-old man who broke into a Ballarat fish and chip shop and stole chicken nuggets, flavoured milk and $10 will be sentenced on Wednesday.

It was one of five occasions Matthew McKinnon broke into a Ballarat business last year, the Ballarat Magistrates' Court on Tuesday heard.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Sam Young told the court McKinnon stole loose change, a $1500 laptop, $1000 iPad, and a safe from the Ballarat businesses.

The court heard on another occasion the accused stole a knife from a Bridge Mall shop because the shop's employee had "peeved" him by following him around the store.

When he was arrested earlier this year police found 0.36grams of ice in his backpack.

During an interview with police McKinnon said he couldn't recall a number of the burglaries and thefts because he was "tripping" on drugs or heavily intoxicated.

On Tuesday McKinnon pleaded guilty to the string of offences, as well as a breach of community corrections order (CCO).

McKinnon's lawyer, Wendy Duncan, told the court her client didn't have many explanations for the offending because his drug addiction had led to a drug-induced psychosis.

She told the court her client had previously made a serious attempt to move away from drugs until he relapsed.

Ms Duncan added the 108 days McKinnon had spent on remand for the matters had given him time to think about his life, and he now understood he needed supports to beat his addiction.

She argued the community would also benefit if her client had the opportunity to rehabilitate on another CCO.

"He needs another chance," she said.

But magistrate Peter Reardon said McKinnon's drug relapse while on the previous CCO was an aggravating feature.

He told the court drug addiction was not a disease, with the decision to take the drug in the user's hand.

"He had the opportunity of a CCO and he didn't comply," Mr Reardon said.

But Ms Duncan said the time McKinnon has had to reflect on his behaviour has given him the motivation to comply this time.

McKinnon was assessed for a CCO but was found unsuitable.

With 18 “unacceptable absences”, corrections prosecutor Brenda Davies said there was little confidence in McKinnon complying with a second CCO.

It is expected Ms Duncan will prepare further submissions overnight to make to the court tomorrow.

McKinnon is expected to be sentenced on Wednesday at 9.30am.