Boy, 12, allegedly crashes stolen car just weeks after release
A 12-YEAR-OLD boy allegedly stole a BMW and crashed it at high speed into two other cars just three weeks after being released from detention for the armed robbery of a convenience store.
The Bulletin chronicled the boy's court appearance last month when Judge Katherine McGinness asked the child, who cannot be legally named, to come out from the dock because she could not see him.
It was the latest in a long run of young criminals running amok on the Coast, including teens bashing others for their clothes, stealing luxury cars, armed hold-ups and the alleged gay bashing of a man and his teenage brother.
Barely visible behind the 1m-high timber partition last month, the 12-year-old kid was asked to sit next to his lawyer as the court was told he robbed the Burleigh Heads 7 Eleven at knifepoint in June last year.
He was sentenced to restorative justice after he had already spent 82 days in detention.
He walked from court on February 10. On Friday night, he was arrested in Burleigh Heads, accused of the high-speed crash that put a woman to hospital.
Police will allege the BMW was stolen from Helensvale about 1pm on February 26.
The 12-year-old was driving the car at high speed about 7pm on Sixth Ave in Miami two days later before it crashed, it is alleged.
He is accused of hitting two other cars. A female in her 40s was taken to Pindara Hospital with neck and chest injuries.
The boy allegedly ran from the scene, before police tracked him down and arrested him at a Burleigh Head unit.
The child was charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle, driving without a licence and failing to remain at the scene of an accident. He briefly fronted court in Southport yesterday. The case was adjourned to tomorrow.
A police source told the Bulletin the justice system had become a farce, letting dangerous offenders out continually.
"You ask those people he hit, do you think it matters if he's 12 or 30, the car was still travelling at speed?," one officer said.
"They're driving cars most people won't hop into in their lives, and they're driving them like they stole them, because they did.
"The kid couldn't even see over the dock. How does he see over the steering wheel?
"Mags don't keep them in, they just let them go and stuff like this will continue to happen, is it going to take someone dying before it's fixed?"
The crash follows the Bulletin's reporting on the infamous Southside Gang coming down to the Coast and stealing cars and breaking into homes.
Sources have told the Bulletin the 12-year-old was affiliated with the gang and had been posting images to social media in stolen cars.
The continued crimes being committed by teens forced police to launch Operation Luminous targeting Gold Coast shopping centres, train and tram stations and other places where teens congregate.