A Tamworth man who committed two break and enters in Port Macquarie has been sentenced to a minimum of 12 months jail.
Jerome Gordon Haines, 21, pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated break and enter and one count of vehicle theft for offences that occurred in April and May 2021.
He is currently in custody at the Mid North Coast Correctional Centre in relation to separate offences and appeared via video link for sentencing in Port Macquarie Local Court on August 4.
In his sentencing remarks Magistrate Shaughan McCosker described Haines as a "high risk offender".
"He does, however, acknowledge the way drugs have played a role in his behaviour and the company that he chooses to keep," he said.
Between 10.30pm on April 28, 2021 and 1.10am on April 29, 2021, Haines broke into a house on Chalmers Street, Port Macquarie.
Haines and a second man entered the home through the locked front door by forcing it open.
Once inside, Haines rummaged through drawers and located keys to a car parked in the driveway.
The occupant was woken around 1am by his dog's barking. He went to investigate and saw Haines and his co-accused, who were wearing black-hooded jumpers, in his driveway.
They then came towards him demanding, "where's your money?"
He went back inside his home, locked the door and called police.
Haines and his co-accused fled the scene in the victim's vehicle, which was later found on Becke Street, Port Macquarie.
DNA samples and discarded clothing found in the car, matched Haines' profile.
Haine's also pleaded guilty to the second break and enter offence, which occurred on May 2, 2021.
He had gained access to a property on Navigators Way, Port Macquarie, by walking through a gate at the rear of the premises and entering the home through a closed, but unlocked, sliding door.
Once inside, Haines and a co-accused used torches to inspect kitchen drawers before locating a woman's handbag.
A female occupant was woken by the torchlight and went to investigate. She screamed when she saw the two intruders, which woke her husband.
Haines and his co-accused then fled the property with the handbag.
Haines' lawyer Wendy McAuliffe said the 21-year-old shows remorse for his actions and how his behaviour affected the people who were in their homes during the break-ins.
In his sentencing remarks, Magistrate McCosker said the court needed to be mindful of the risk of institutionalisation.
"He's a 21-year-old man who has spent a significant portion of his life in institutions or custody," he said.
"He has also expressed a willingness to engage in rehabilitation. However, there is no sentence available to the court other than a period of imprisonment."
For the break and enter offences, Haines has been sentenced to jail for a minimum period of 12 months which has been backdated to when he entered custody.
He will be eligible for parole on June 15, 2023. His parole period will be a further 12 months, and will expire on June 15, 2024.
Magistrate McCosker also imposed a period of three months jail for the vehicle theft which will expire on September 15, 2022.
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