A young mum was sentenced to a month in prison in Maryborough Magistrates Court.
A young mum was sentenced to a month in prison in Maryborough Magistrates Court. Valerie Horton

How a simple text message helped land young mum behind bars

A SIMPLE text message has helped land a young mum behind bars.

Stevie-Lee Devine, 22, appeared before Maryborough Magistrates Court facing one charge of possessing dangerous drugs and another of failing to properly dispose of a syringe.

The court heard that Devine had arranged to collect a small amount of methylamphetamine from a dealer in the car park of a Hervey Bay shopping centre.

The messages were intercepted by police, who executed a search warrant at Devine's Maryborough unit.

Her mobile phone was seized and a syringe was found during the raid, but no drugs were found.

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Defence lawyer Travis George said his client had made admissions about the text message she had sent to the dealer and without those admissions, it was unlikely his client could have been charged.

He said Devine, a mother to 3-year-old Bentley, was in the process of recovering from her drug addiction.

She was accessing opioid treatment from a Wide Bay support service and was also getting additional counselling and support, Mr George said.

He described his client's crime at the lowest end of the scale saying she was at "the very bottom of the food chain," when it came to drug offending.

Mr George said his client had come before the court with the operational period of a suspended sentence hanging over her, but he said Magistrate John Smith could still decide to give Devine immediate parole.

He said his client had previously spent 34 days in custody and she "never wanted to go back again".

"She's extremely emotional," Mr George said.

 

He said his client knew she had placed herself in danger of going back to prison.

Mr Smith said the court had given Devine an opportunity to stay out of prison when it extended the operational period of her suspended sentence in September 2015.

"Now through her own behaviour she has opened herself up to time in a correctional centre," he said.

Mr Smith fined Devine $1250 and sentenced her to a month in prison.

Devine broke down as the sentence was read out and called out her son's name.

Outside the court, Devine's grandmother Julie Devine told of the family's devastation that she was going back to prison.

She said her granddaughter was working hard at getting her life together and had slipped up just once.

She said the family would keep Devine's unit for her and care for Bentley until she was released from prison.



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