M'boro woman steals charity tins, wallet in crime spree

SNATCHING an elderly man's wallet while he was sitting at a gaming machine at a Urangan hotel was just one part of Natasha Effie Blair's crime spree.

In addition, she stole several charity tins from businesses across the region.

The 33-year-old woman pleaded guilty to a series of charges before Maryborough District Court this week, including stealing, serious assault of a police officer, public nuisance and drug offences.

Blair made headlines last year after she snatched an elderly man's wallet at the Kondari Hotel in Elizabeth St. She was chased by patrons and staff members and Blair eventually threw the wallet away before leaving the scene.

Police later caught the Maryborough woman. According to documents presented to the court, Blair was also responsible for stealing several charity tins last year.

Blair took a container belonging to Guide Dogs Queensland from a business at Murgon in June last year and a month later she entered Boaties Warehouse in Ellena St, Maryborough, and took a Coast Guard Fraser Coast charity box, hiding it under her jumper.

She stole another charity tin while at the Carriers Arms Hotel, the court documents read, while a charity box belonging to the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard was stolen from the BP Service Station in Granville.

In addition to those offences, according to the documents presented before the court, an unknown person entered the home of a Maryborough man and took his wallet, which contained numerous bankcards as well as $350. Blair was found to have used the man's Mastercard card to buy a carton of rum and make purchases at a shopping centre and Bunnings.

A search warrant was executed at her address and police found the Mastercard. Police also found a milk drink bottle that had been fashioned into a drug utensil and an electric grinder containing cannabis residue.

The court documents showed that Blair had also pleaded guilty to unlawful use of a motor vehicle and driving while unlicensed. Blair was stopped by police after they saw her driving a Toyota Prado that had been reported stolen. They found she did not have a valid licence and also discovered one gram of cannabis inside a small pink and black key holder.

The serious assault came when police stopped Blair on the corner of Ferry Ln and North St in Maryborough. She swore at police loudly before she was arrested and started acting violently.

Blair raised her feet and kicked off the vehicle to resist the officers. One of the officer's thumbs was dislocated as a result.

In a second incident involving police, Blair attended the Maryborough Police Station and began to swear and yell. She was arrested and struggled with police officers as she was taken to the watch house. Blair was told to stop resisting, but flung her head back in an attempt to head-butt two of the officers escorting her.

The court heard Blair had served 251 days in pre-sentence custody. She was sentenced to two years in prison and was released immediately on parole.