Gayle Michelle Bessant
Gayle Michelle Bessant contributed

No clean getaway for vacuum-stealing grandma

THE woman who thought she'd made a clean getaway after stealing four Dyson vacuums and a flatscreen TV from Bundy Aldi stores has pleaded guilty from prison.

On Tuesday, Gayle Michelle Bessant, 47, appeared via video link to Bundaberg Magistrates Court, and pleaded guilty to 17 charges including stealing, driving without a license and possessing dangerous drugs.

 

CHARGES LAID: A woman has been charged with stealing four Dyson vacuum cleaners from Aldi.
THIEF: Gayle Bessant caught on CCTV stealing four Dyson vacuums from Aldi. Contributed

Police prosecutor Sergeant Dean Burgess told Magistrate Neil Lavaring Bessant's stealing was "unsophisticated", saying she simply went into stores and stole things.

"Whether it's alcohol, household goods, whatever it may be, she doesn't pay for it - she walks in and grabs it, walks out the door," Sgt Burgess said.

"Considering she has previously been afforded every opportunity, she's been given probation ... and that's the issue for Ms Bessant, is that most of the offences she's here for she's already been imprisoned for previously."

The court heard Bessant had stolen from and attempted to steal from Across the Waves, Toyworld, Repco and Chemist Warehouse.

Defence lawyer Lavonda Maloy said the grandmother had found it hard to find employment since moving to Bundaberg, and had "progressed to using illicit substances" to cope with the death of her brother.

"I can't address every single matter that brings my client before the court, that would be too voluminous," Mrs Maloy said.

"She's always been a heavy drinker."

She said Bessant knew she needed to address the "long-term addiction" she had as a result of self-medicating, and had been stealing to afford drugs.

Mr Lavaring handed Bessant several concurrent imprisonment sentences ranging from one month to 12 months.

Bessant is set to be released with parole on April 15.