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A 17-year-old has admitted his part in vandalising four Christchurch buildings, including a church.
Stefan Alexander Hirst, unemployed, pleaded guilty in Christchurch District Court today to causing intentional damage.
Judge Gary MacAskill was told that he was with five others who vandalised the Phillipstown buildings by smashing two doors and 35 windows, and throwing items around inside, and damaging glassware and silverware and throwing cleaning fluid on the altar of the Church of Good Shepherd.
Hirst told police he joined in smashing windows on September 19 "because others were doing it".
Police said they considered the case was too serious for the diversion scheme for first offenders, but Judge MacAskill urged them to reconsider their decision and remanded Hirst on bail for two weeks to see if the scheme could be used.
Diversion allows first offenders to make amends by writing letters of apology, cleaning up or paying for damage, doing voluntary work, or making donations.
Hirst was bailed to reappear on December 16.