A landscaper, who rented nine weed whackers from Williams’ Equipment Limited five years ago, was ordered to repay $6, 935.
Noel Ryan Washington of Tudor Bridge, St. Michael admitted to Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant that he stole the whackers sometime between December 20, 2011 and October 26, 2014.
Along with compensation to the company, the 35-year-old was ordered to pay a further $500 in court costs in one month’s time, with an alternative of six weeks behind bars.
Addressing the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court today, Washington said he was “at the mercy of the court” and asked for the chance to repay the company.
He explained that he made a $50 payment to the company after renting the equipment, but lost his job and had a young baby soon after.
Sergeant Robert Jones told the court that the whackers had been legitimately rented from Williams Equipment but were never returned. That came to light during an audit but even after Washington was contacted and agreed to foot the bill, he never did. The matter was therefore reported to police.
Washington was eventually found at his home and taken into custody.
During police interviews Washington never said what happened with the items but said he would take full responsibility and pay for them.
Today, he stated that he had to get to work early at the time and therefore gave a friend the whackers to return for him, never realizing that the friend had not done so.
Washington also said that he could only afford to pay $200 monthly “for right now”.
The magistrate allowed him to make those payments to the court for a six-month period, with the understanding that payments will increase thereafter.