Thief jailed for church defication

COMPULSIVE Coraki car thief Steven Cowan is behind bars until December after being jailed for his illegal activities.

In one break-in at a Coraki church, Cowan defecated and smeared his excrement around the interior of the place of worship.

Cowan, 24, pleaded guilty in Lismore Local Court to a spate of motor vehicle thefts dating back to 2007 and 2008 in which he took a pro-active role in stealing cars at Lismore, South Grafton, Goonellabah and Ballina.

He also pleaded guilty to four offences of being carried in the stolen vehicles.

One of Cowan’s victims had her Toyota Corolla stolen while she was a patient at Lismore Base Hospital, and had left it parked on a nearby street in October 2008.

In another incident police officers saw him driving one stolen vehicle that was later found abandoned in scrub.

Cowan left an easy trail for police to track him down, with his fingerprints and even blood traces found inside the stolen vehicles.

With Cowan already in jail after being re-arrested in December last year, magistrate Robyn Denes backdated his-nine month sentence on these offences.

Cowan also pleaded guilty to stealing a Ford Meteor at Casino on December 11 last year; possession of an implement used to break, enter and drive motor vehicles; and break, enter and steal from a house.

On December 12, Cowan used the stolen Ford to drive himself to the scene of the house break-in at Smiths Creek, where he stole jewellery and a camera. He was seen by observant neighbours who called police.

Cowan was arrested later that day walking along a country road.

On these offences Cowan was sentenced to 13 months and 15 days’ jail with a non-parole of three months to date from September 9, 2010.

On the matter of breaking into a place of Divine Worship, the Catholic Church at Coraki on Australia Day 2007 (for which he previously received a 12-month suspended jail sentence and was instead placed on a good behaviour bond that he subsequently breached), Magistrate Denes ordered him to serve six months’ jail from December 9, 2009, to June 8, 2010.

Police facts before the court state Cowan defecated on the church floor and ‘spread his waste all over’.

Cowan will be eligible for release under ongoing supervised parole on December 8.

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