Matthew Crane
Matthew Crane

Man jailed after reoffending one month into suspended sentence

A MAN involved in a Burnett Heads shooting in 2018 will be heading back to jail after committing a string of offences while serving his suspended sentence.

Matthew Charles Crane, 30, was jailed for four years, suspended after 14 months, for his involvement in the shooting in 2018 and yesterday in Bundaberg District Court the remainder of the sentence was activated.

Once released, he began reoffending within one month.

In sentencing, Judge Vicki Loury said Crane was jailed in 2018 for causing grievous bodily harm to a man, wounding, and possession of a weapon.

“The complainant in that matter was shot, not by you, but by a co-offender,” Judge Loury said.

Crown prosecutor Steven Dickson said Crane was released on June 19, 2019, and was caught for disqualified driving on July 26, 2019.

At the time he had a small amount of methamphetamine and amphetamine on him.

In total Crane was caught for disqualified driving three times since his release and was charged for nine other offences, mostly drug-related, all of which breached his suspended sentence.

Mr Dickson said while the offences weren’t serious or of a like nature to the original crime they were persistent and he suggested Crane serve the remainder of his sentence.

Defence barrister Nick Larter agreed with Mr Dickson that it was not unjust to activate the sentence.

However, Mr Larter said as it was less serious offending and Crane had been in custody since November a parole release date should be issued within a couple of months.

Mr Larter said Crane was addicted to methamphetamine and had been diagnosed with schizophrenia.

He said Crane was now being treated in prison while engaging with a mental health service.

In regards to his diagnosis of schizophrenia, Judge Loury warned that Crane should be cautious about his drug use.

“You have to realise, Mr Crane, that your using methamphetamine and having a very serious mental illness could lead to very serious consequences when you’re in the community, particularly for your family,” she said.

“Your nine-year-old in particular should not have to tell his or her friends that his or her father is in jail.

Judge Loury activated the whole of Crane’s suspended sentence, of which 34 months remained.

She said that it was in the best interest of the community for Crane to be on parole for a lengthy period of time and set the parole release date for June 17 this year.