Judge rethinks jail sentence for man who hit 'rock bottom'
A CONVICTED criminal's efforts to turn his life around has encouraged a judge to give him a more lenient sentence, a court has heard.
Nicholas Michael George, 38, successfully appealed his sentence in the Lismore District Court on Wednesday.
He was sentenced in August in Lismore Local Court to nine-month imprisonment, with one-month parole period for a larceny charge, and one-month imprisonment for unlawfully obtaining goods.
George had been convicted for walking into a Lismore store and taking a 12-volt box jump starter without paying for it.
But when he appeared before Lismore District Court, Judge Jeffrey McLennan said George had been working to turn his life around, having accessed a mental health plan and engaging in the community.
"Very often courts hear a phrase that's been hackneyed and that is 'at a crossroads' however, Mr George may generally be at such a place and we need to be giving him such an encouragement,' Judge McLennan said.
George, who has a criminal history centred "around primarily the possession of stolen property, possession of drugs and motor vehicle offences", was serving a nine-month intensive corrections order at the time of his latest offence.
Judge McLennan said while George's sentencing assessment report "was largely unfavourable", it seemed he now had a better chance at rehabilitation since accessing a mental health plan.
"This material (indicates George) suffered from anxiety and depression," Judge McLennan said.
"I'm not sure if his drug use is centred around his response to a relationship break up and the associated trauma.,"
"(It's clear he) hit rock bottom, but it also suggests to me he is slowly but surely climbing back from that very low point in his life.
"Those endeavours should be encouraged."
George was resentenced to a nine-month intensive correction order for larceny, and one-month ICO for the other charge, which will run concurrently together.
Judge McLennan wished George "good luck" when the matter was concluded.
"Hopefully we won't see you again," he said.