A man has been granted bail after spending two months in custody for two weeks of alleged offending across Ballarat and Bendigo, including driving at police.
Magistrate Letizia Torres said she was satisfied compelling reasons for bail were shown and the risks could be reduced to an acceptable level, but her decision was 'borderline'.
Stringer made a self-represented application for bail at the Ballarat Magistrates' Court last week and the case returned on Monday for his brother to provide supporting evidence.
His younger brother told the court Stringer could live with him, his girlfriend and his baby at their home in Brown Hill and work with him in earth moving. He said he would notify police if Stringer breached his bail conditions.
"He's the best when he is around me which is why I am here to help him today," he said. Stringer said he had relapsed into drug use after a dispute with his partner and her family, leading to the alleged offending.
Stringer was charged with the theft of three baskets of clothing from washing machines at a laundromat on March 18, which he said he thought were his mother's clothes. He was charged with breaching his bail conditions and not complying with his curfew, driving unlicensed, stealing petrol and using fraudulent registration plates.
The court heard he was a passenger in a car with stolen number plates that veered left and hit a power pole on Main Road about 4.10am on March 28.
About 6.20am the same day a Canadian resident woke up to find his ute had been stolen. The home was just more than one kilometre from the collision and Stringer was later seen exiting the passenger seat of the stolen car in Bendigo about 11am. Stringer was charged with aggravated burglary and theft of the car, which he said he denied.
Police were patrolling in Kangaroo Flat on March 30 after reported sightings of the stolen car and saw Stringer allegedly sitting in the car at the end of a court. Stringer allegedly drove towards the officers who had to move out of the way to avoid being hit and drove dangerously to evade police. They later found the car with a silver flip knife and axe inside.
The court heard Stringer was assessed suitable for bail support through the Court Integrated Services Program and his brother had enquired about drug rehabilitation in Ballarat.
Ms Torres granted him bail with conditions.
"There are a million reasons why people can say they lost control of themselves. Life is full of disappointments and challenges," she said. "You can have all of the best people around you. At the end of the day it is your commitment that matters."
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