Radio announcer, mates in court for damaging Charleville pool
A CHARLEVILLE radio announcer and his mate were charged with wilful damage after they were caught vandalising the Charleville pool.
Announcer for 4RR FM Jack Lionel James Double, and 20-year-old Phillip Anthony O'Neil both pleaded guilty to wilful damage at Charleville Magistrates Court on November 4.
Lionel Bruce James Sullivan was also allegedly involved and is expected to enter his plea at a later date.
Police prosecutor sergeant Caroline Boodnikoff said police were called to King Edward Park behind the swimming pool after receiving a complaint of people damaging property at 3am on September 12.
"The informant stated that it sounded like bashing of metal and smashing noises," sergeant Boodnikoff said.
When police attended the park, they found eight green Colorbond panels severely damaged, with witnesses saying the youths fled when they saw the police cars.
CCTV footage obtained from the Murweh Shire Council allowed the police to identify a number of people, with Double given a notice to appear on October 1.
"He expressed his remorse to police at this time, claiming the offence was a stupid mistake," Sergeant Boodnikoff told the court.
Double and O'Neil, neither who have prior criminal history, were both under the influence of alcohol with O'Neil claiming he blacked out just before the vandalism.
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Solicitor Laurie Parker told the court that Double is "going well" as an announcer at 4RR FM, and tendered a character reference from another announcer to the court.
"Leading up to this offence, he's had an argument with someone and been very intoxicated," Mr Parker said.
Magistrate Peter Saggers told Double it was a "mindless" and "stupid" thing to do.
"When you spoke to the police, you gave them an explanation of what happened," Magistrate Saggers said.
"Just because you'd been drinking - that's no excuse to go out and damage property.
"It only causes loss to the shire and disappointment in people when they see what happened when they go for a swim there the next day.
"And if you're going to be a radio announcer, then people will call into your show, if you had a show, and say, 'look, I got here this morning and the fencing panels at the pool were damaged.'"
Magistrate Saggers also warned Double's blue card could be in jeopardy if he keeps going to court.
Double was ordered to serve 60 hours of unpaid community service and pay $437.66 restitution to the council.
O'Neil was fined $750 and pay $437.66 as well to the council, but he was not given community service due to an injury.
Convictions weren't recorded for either of them.
Sullivan's case was adjourned to December 8 so he can deal with another matter at the same time.
"Don't come before the court when you've got such a promising future," Magistrate Saggers told Double.