App leads police to iPhone thief

THE "find my phone" application on a Toowoomba man's stolen iPhone had led to its thief Henry Nathan Gaulton, the city's Magistrates Court heard yesterday.

Gaulton, 17, and co-offenders had gone "creeping" and looking for homes to break into on the night of January 7, the court heard.

The group broke into two Centenary Heights homes in Hunter and Storey Sts from which laptop computers, an iPhone, mobile phones and cash had been taken, prosecutor Sergeant Karen Kroon said.

However, one of the victims was able to trace his iPhone by the "find my phone" app which led police to a Perth St house where Gaulton and friends were found with a range of items including those stolen in the break-ins.

When police activated the stolen iPhone's finder, the phone had gone off in Gaulton's pocket, Sgt Kroon said.

Gaulton made full admissions to police and pleaded guilty to both break-ins.

He also pleaded guilty to his role in the break-in of a smash repairs shop in his home-town of Cunnamulla on the night of November 22.

Gaulton and a co-offender had cut the cables to the shop's CCTV camera before breaking into the shop's office and stealing a cash tin containing $5900, cheques and other items, Sgt Kroon said.

He later showed police where he had thrown the cash tin into a creek and though the tin was recovered no cash had been found, the court heard.

Gaulton also pleaded guilty to his role in the break-in of Cunnamulla's Billabong Hotel in the early hours of December 13 from which a large quantity of alcohol had been stolen, and to the break-in of a pharmacy in the town from which prescriptions drugs were taken.

His solicitor Shane Macdonald said his client was easily led by his peers.

The teenager had a farm hand job to go to when he got out of jail which would keep him away from bad influences and give him something constructive to do with his time, Mr Macdonald submitted.

Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist told Gaulton the community had had enough "of people like you infiltrating their houses and cars and stealing property" and sentenced him to 12 months jail, but ordered he be released on parole on March 2.

Topics:  app iphone

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