11 January 2022

Accused burglar with criminal history that 'runs for many, many pages' refused bail

| Albert McKnight
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ACT Law Courts

Joel William Heard, 38, was refused bail after being charged with burglary. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

A serial crim with “over 200 entries” in his criminal history was allegedly found hiding behind a bin before being charged with an alleged burglary at a residential complex in south Canberra.

Joel William Heard, 38, is now back behind bars after being refused bail in the ACT Magistrates Court on Monday (10 January).

Court documents say a resident was at the complex on Strangways Street in Curtin early on Sunday morning (9 January) when he heard someone try to open the front door to his home.

The resident went outside and watched a man allegedly take several of his belongings from his storage cage in the complex’s underground basement and put them in the baggage holder of an electric bicycle.

Police arrived to find the man allegedly putting items onto the bicycle before he spotted them and fled, discarding several items as he did so.

Officers said they found Heard hiding behind a garbage bin at a nearby service station and arrested him.

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They allege they found several items that had been stolen from the complex at the bin, as well as a crowbar, torch and black gloves.

Police learned several storage cages and a car had been broken into at the complex, with stolen items including power tools.

Heard was charged with burglary and possessing an article with the intent to use it in a burglary, to which he has not entered pleas.

When applying for bail, the duty lawyer said Heard was released from custody in July 2020, was now on a good behaviour order and claimed he had been doing well over the last six months, and had been working at a landscaping business.

But Magistrate Peter Morrison said, “on the face of it”, the prosecution case appeared to be “relatively strong”.

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He said Heard had a very extensive criminal history that “runs for many, many pages” for a range of offences, while a bail consideration form also referred to “over 200 entries” for what had been described as similar offences to the current matter.

Heard has also served “not insignificant” terms of imprisonment, he said, and if the current offence was proved, the prospects of jail were “reasonably high”.

Magistrate Morrison refused bail and remanded him in custody to 28 January.

When told he would not be leaving custody, Heard, who was appearing in court over audio-visual link, walked off the screen.

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Finagen_Freeman4:14 pm 11 Jan 22

So did I hear right? I heard Heard was refused bail?
Finally a magistrate earning their keep!

Because the magistrate heard Heard had a herd of previous convictions.

As he is currently locked up, have we finally achieved Heard Immunity?

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