Woman denies breaking in
A woman who denied a burglary
charge changed her mind and pleaded guilty after magistrate Nova Hall explained
the law to her.
Eloisa Veta Brown was charged with
the burglary of a West Bay residence earlier this month. In court last
Wednesday she objected that the charge should be theft because “I didn’t break
into the house. The back door was wide open.”
The magistrate explained that
burglary is not breaking in. It is entering as a trespasser with intent to
commit an offence.
Brown admitted taking a purse from
a handbag inside the house, adding that the handbag was on a table near the
Crown counsel Kenneth Ferguson said
the incident occurred sometime after 3pm on a Sunday. Brown walked into the
house and stole a purse containing US$140 and documents.
She was seen by police several
hours later and arrested. She indicated where she had discarded the purse and
officers went to the area but did not find it.
Interviewed the next day. Brown
refused to provide a specimen of urine for drug testing.
The magistrate asked for a copy of
Brown’s previous convictions and indicated there were quite a few for burglary.
“Not that much,” Brown suggested.
The magistrate counted 13. She said
this was an aggravating feature. To Brown’s credit, she did plead guilty on the
first occasion of being brought to court.
The magistrate therefore sentenced
her to 12 months imprisonment. For failing to provide a specimen she imposed a
six-month sentence, but made it concurrent.