A man, in custody since October 2021, has been sentenced to six months in jail for his involvement with a stolen car. The 25-year-old was arrested after police saw him attempting to climb a tree to hide.
Joel McKellar, of Bunglegumbie Road, appeared in Dubbo Local Court on March 19 this year and pleaded guilty to being carried in a stolen car.
The court heard his sentence would be backdated and accordingly expired in April last year.
The court heard he got into a stolen Holden Colorado with two other people on Tuesday, October 12, 2021. The co-accused were aged 21 and 17 at the time of the offending.
"He's spent a long time in custody. It's unfortunate," defence solicitor George Fren said referring to McKellar having been refused bail since the date of the offence.
According to court documents, an unknown person stole a dark grey Holden Colorado parked in a driveway at Linda Drive in Dubbo between 3.15pm and 2.30am on October 12, 2021.
At about 9am, police were told the vehicle was seen near Narromine and Warren. Police soon spotted the vehicle on Thornton Avenue in Warren reversing out of a driveway and into a wheelie bin.
McKellar was a passenger in the stolen vehicle which went south and turned into Hale Street at high speed. Police started a pursuit which continued into Dubbo Street with lights and sirens.
At the edge of Warren, a highway patrol vehicle overtook the police and engaged in a pursuit. They observed the car move onto the wrong side of the road a "number of times".
The court heard during the joyride, three oncoming vehicles were forced off the road as the stolen Holden approached them.
The vehicle was then seen driving towards Narromine on Warren Road. As it came closer to town it crossed on to the incorrect side and drove across a T-intersection against a give way sign. It narrowly missed a B-double truck heading east along Mitchell Highway.
The Holden then travelled south towards Nevertire and again crossed over to the wrong side of the road. Police said the vehicle "deliberately" swerved towards their vehicle forcing them to break and avoid collision.
Police later found the vehicle abandoned at a laneway near Sixth Avenue in Narromine. At about 11.35am a broadcast was made over the police radio that three males were seen running from the stolen vehicle. The trio ran across Mitchell Highway towards Narromine Golf Course.
McKellar and the now 19-year-old co-accused were found trying to climb a tree in the golf course,to avoid police. They were both arrested.
Magistrate Gary Wilson sentenced McKellar to six months imprisonment from October 12, 2021 to April 11, 2022. He asked Sergeant Gabrielle Cornett from the Director of Public Prosecutions if the Crown was content with the sentence and she accepted.
"Thank you, Your Honour," McKellar addressed the magistrate.
"You're welcome. All the best," Mr Wilson said.