A CAR thief has told a Bendigo magistrate that he will not let the court down when he is released from custody.
Bailey Ranking made the speech in the Bendigo Magistrates' Court on Thursday after he was sentenced to four months in jail and an 18-month community corrections order.
The 24-year-old, who pleaded guilty to close to 50 charges, told Magistrate Patrick Southey the mistakes he made were "inexcusable" and he had learnt from his "extraordinarily hard" time in custody.
The charges stemmed from a number of car thefts, petrol thefts, and unlicensed driving incidents around Bendigo and Melbourne over the past year.
The court heard about 11.15am on July 27, Ranking stole an unattended Volvo four-wheel-drive from a service station in Ringwood, in Melbourne's eastern suburbs.
Officers then saw Ranking driving the vehicle along the Eastern Freeway, travelling at an estimated speed of 180km/h.
The court heard the 24-year-old, who was unlicensed at the time, was weaving between traffic and nearly collided with other drivers.
Police eventually lost sight of Ranking but located him at a Clifton Hill service station about 2.19pm that day.
He and his female passenger were arrested and then bailed to appear at the Ringwood Magistrates' Court.
About 6.34pm that evening, Ranking and the co-accused went to a Wantirna service station. Ranking again stole an unattended Honda Civic.
Over the next couple of days, Ranking and the co-accused used the stolen Honda to steal number plates from an East Bendigo address and petrol from a Ravenswood service station.
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The court heard on August 2, the pair drove the vehicle to a petrol station on High Street in Bendigo. When the victim left their Toyota Corolla unattended, Ranking entered the vehicle and drove off.
Ranking and his co-accused were eventually arrested at a South Melbourne address on August 11.
Defence lawyer Bethany East on Wednesday told the court that Ranking had significant issues with drug abuse.
She said he should be afforded the opportunity at a community corrections order.
Magistrate Patrick Southey on Thursday said he accepted Ranking seemed "fair dinkum" about wanting to change but the offending was still so "outrageous" that there needed to be a further jail term.
Ranking was convicted and sentenced to four months in jail, with 71 days of pre-sentence detention reckoned as already served.
He was also ordered to complete an 18-month community corrections order with drug rehabilitation and mental health treatment.
Ranking's licence was cancelled and he was disqualified from driving for 12 months.
Mr Southey said if Ranking did not plead guilty, he would have been jailed for 12 months with a non-parole period of six months.
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