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cash, money, generic, hand Contributed

Woman left in disbelief as she fronts court for stealing

A WOMAN has been taken to court by her past employer after she did a favour for her mum and slipped her some free produce.

Fronting Proserpine Magistrates Court this week, Samantha Ann Woodward of Jubilee Pocket said she couldn't believe the unfolding of events that had led her to court.

"I feel awful," she said.

"I'm still not convinced I'm standing here, going through this."

Police prosecutor Sergeant Emma Myors told the court Woodward was working as a shop assistant at Master Butchers Whitsunday when on September 7 she decided to take a gamble with the law.

She said the 27-year-old served her mother that morning, and placed items of meat in her shopping bag for free and manually discounted other items.

The total of unpaid meat amounted to more than $130 out of a total of $210.

Sgt Myors said the customer was unaware of what was happening at the time.

Woodward said a colleague tipped her boss off about what she'd done, with the store's CCTV footage confirming the crime.

The court heard Woodward had lost her employment since the incident.

The mother of two pleaded guilty this week to one charge of stealing by clerks and servants.

Solicitor Peta Vernon said employees of the business use to receive discounts for family and friends.

"This is a less than desirable situation right now and one she wouldn't like to repeat," Mrs Vernon said.

"She has a good work history, mainly in retail and so a conviction could be detrimental to her future employment.

"She is still a young person and she is remorseful."

Magistrate James Morton agreed there was time for Woodward to redeem her actions.

"You've got the whole world at your feet," he said.

"It is unfortunate that somebody in your position took the gamble and it didn't pay off."

Woodward was fined $450 and ordered to pay restitution of $134, with convictions not recorded.