Thad Kaemeron Bodden, slated for trial on Thursday for theft, shortened proceedings by asking to have the charge put to him again. He then pleaded guilty and received a sentence of six months imprisonment.
Mr. Bodden admitted to stealing a pair of designer sunglasses and a small gold pendant on the night of March 8-9, 2018. The items were in a vehicle parked at a condominium complex in George Town.
Crown counsel Greg Walcolm explained that the complainant parked her car at her residence on the Thursday night. Later she thought she might have left it open, so she checked at 5:45 a.m. on Friday.
Some items from the glove compartment were on the front seat. Sunglasses, valued at US$350, were missing from the center console and a pendant, valued at US$300, was missing from a coin tray.
She observed a fingerprint on the window of the driver’s side door and called police. She had washed the car the previous evening.
Mr. Walcolm said the woman was not seeking compensation because she did not think the defendant would be able to pay.
Defense attorney John Furniss said Mr. Bodden, 41, first came to court for this matter on May 9. It was the result of fingerprint matching that led police to speak to him about the incident, which he initially denied.
Mr. Furniss acknowledged that the defendant had numerous previous convictions for what he called “petty” and “nuisance” offenses that included theft from cars or trespassing onto people’s property to interfere with motor vehicles. Items stolen from vehicles previously were typically cigarettes or small amounts of cash.
The attorney noted that Mr. Bodden had been in court on March 19, when he was sentenced to two months imprisonment for criminal trespass – a case in which he fell asleep on someone’s porch. He had served that sentence and was out of prison for only about a week when police arrested him for this incident. It was a shock when he was arrested so soon after his release, he said.
“It a pity this was not known at the time he was sentenced on March 19,” Mr. Furniss suggested.
During his latest remand, Mr. Bodden had time to think, the attorney said.
“He knows if he comes back for criminal trespass or theft, the court will be very unimpressed with his behavior.”
The defendant had been in the Drug Rehabilitation Court for a time and had done well, “but then there were problems,” Mr. Furniss added.
Magistrate Philippa McFarlane said she would give credit for the guilty plea even though it had come on the day of the trial.
(The complainant and the investigating officer had been in attendance since 10 a.m. and the case could not be reached until after the lunch adjournment.)
The magistrate said this offense appeared to be part of a spree and Mr. Bodden had a very poor record.
She pointed out that there were support systems available, even though he was not in the drug court any longer.
“You need to get your act together,” she advised.
Sentence after trial would have been eight or nine months, she indicated, but six months was appropriate in light of the guilty plea. He is to receive credit for time in custody on this offense.