Connor Thomas jailed after failing to begin community service order imposed in January

A Wollongong thief who failed to even begin, let alone finish, his court-imposed community service order will have three months behind bars to ponder his ‘bad attitude’. 

Connor Reece Thomas was ordered to perform 100 hours of community service after being convicted in February of stealing a high-end pushbike from the tray of a Toyota Hilux in Wollongong.

However, the 20-year-old tradie repeatedly flouted his obligations, failing to turn up to work on seven occasions while giving Community Corrections staff a plethora of poor excuses for his absence and even getting his mum to call in sick for him.

In total, he completed just two out of the required 100 hours – and that was just the course induction. 

When pressed by staff about his less-than-credible commitment to doing the work, Thomas told them their “rules” were “bullshit” and that he “had an answer for everything”.

Yet, Thomas was left all but speechless in Wollongong Local Court on Thursday when Magistrate Robert Walker revoked his original community service order and sentenced him to jail.

“If I could just get one more chance at community service…..,” Thomas stammered in court in a bid to retain his freedom.

“I made a silly mistake...I really intended to do it.”

However, Magistrate Walker was dubious after reading a Community Corrections report detailing the extent of Thomas’ disrespect for the original court order.

The report said Thomas missed two scheduled inductions in mid-February before eventually turning up to a third at the end of the month.

He was told to report to the work bus at 8am the following Saturday (April 7) but failed to show and did not make contact to explain his absence.

When questioned by Correctives staff a few days later, Thomas told them he’d been “too sick to get out of bed”, had no credit to phone the Radio Doctor and had blisters on his feet from new work boots.

He also said he asked his mum to contact the service on his behalf, but she’d been unable to get through on the phone.

He was issued with his first formal warning and told to show up to work on April 14, but missed that date, along with Saturday, April 21.

The court heard he missed work on April 28, May 5, May 12 and May 19, but did make it to a meeting with his Community Corrections officer, who issued him with a second formal warning.

Corrections staff bit the bullet on May 23, removing Thomas from the program and initiating the current breach of CSO proceedings.

“It gives me no joy in doing this but you’re the one who put it on yourself with your bad attitude,” Magistrate Walker said as Thomas was taken into custody on Thursday afternoon.