Four months’ detention for dishonesty crimes

An Invercargill man has been sentenced to home detention for a series of dishonesty crimes around Otago and Southland.

David James Alexander (46) appeared before the online hearing of Invercargill District Court on Thursday for sentence on four charges of receiving property.

Alexander also faces other Crown charges and he would be awaiting trial at home after being sentenced by Judge Mike Mika to four months of home detention after serving seven months in jail.

According to the summary of facts, Alexander committed four offences between last December and January this year.

On January 4, he broke into Mike’s Cars Limited in Dunedin where he pried open a safe, stole the keys and drove off with a car which was similar to his ex-partner’s vehicle that was deemed undriveable after a crash.

Days before the break-in, he transferred the car from his ex-partner’s name and new plates were issued by Land Transport New Zealand. He placed those new plates in the stolen car.

He also tried to change the outside appearance of the stolen car by using a snorkel, flared wheel guards and mag wheels removed from his partner’s car, but he was arrested on January 26 driving the stolen car.

Inside the car and with the defendant was a firearm which was stolen from an address in Herbert at an earlier date, a Nike bag with five bottles of whisky, valued at $750, which was stolen from an address in Winton, and a diesel mileage and registration stickers, which were stolen from a car in Gore.

During the online hearing this week, defence lawyer Peter Redpath highlighted his client was in custody already for seven months.

He asked besides the early guilty plea discount on his sentencing, the judge consider a further reduction on Alexander’s sentence as the man had been injured during his arrest and had a teenaged son facing serious health issues.

His client faced hardships during his upbringing which included abuse, he said.

Judge Mika said Alexander had an extensive record of dishonesty and firearm offences, but he acknowledged the submission of the defence lawyer about his three personal factors.

“You have a history of neglect and physical and sexual abuse ... you have a son with serious health issues and you have an injury that you sustained when arrested, which is causing significant pain.”

He followed the sentence indication of 12 months of home detention and discounted eight months of it in relation to his period in custody and personal circumstances.

Alexander was also ordered to pay $2000 in reparation and follow any possible release conditions imposed by the Department of Corrections.


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