A quick outfit change wasn’t enough to throw waiting media off the trail of a 25-year-old man who fronted court on child abuse charges this morning.
A quick outfit change wasn’t enough to throw waiting media off the trail of a 25-year-old man who fronted court on child abuse charges this morning. Barry Leddicoat

Oh, baby! I fine you $600 and send you to, er, hospital

A PREGNANT woman on stealing charges in the Maroochydore Magistrates Court left to do hard labour - literally.

An ambulance was called to take the woman to hospital today after the court heard she was in the early stages of labour.

Paeone Helen Smith, 38, gave no clue about her condition when she walked to the bar table to plead guilty to six charges before taking a seat .

But when police prosecutor Sergeant Vicky Kennedy-Grills paused over a point of contention relating to Smith's arrest, duty solicitor Rachel Holland intervened.

"My client is in the early stages of labour," Ms Holland said.

Smith said  she just wanted "to get the matter over with."

She was charged with driving off from a Gympie service station without paying for about $40 worth of fuel and trying to leave Coles at Nambour without paying for about $700 worth of goods.

She also admitted driving while her licence was suspended for unpaid fines, contravening a police direction to attend a station and supply her identifying particulars and two breaches of bail.

After fining Ms Smith $600 and ordering she pay restitution for the petrol, Magistrate Barry Barrett wished her well.

"Best of luck with your birth," he said.
 


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