12-year-old locked up this Christmas 'for his own safety'

A Coast pensioner has been refused bail after being charged with drug trafficking.
A Coast pensioner has been refused bail after being charged with drug trafficking. Rockhampton Morning Bulletin

A 12-YEAR-OLD boy will spend Christmas in custody after a Toowoomba magistrate locked him up for his own safety.

The lad, who as a juvenile cannot be named, had regularly run away from the designated safe house where he was living and would be gone for days at a time, the Toowoomba Children's Court heard.

He had been reported to police as a missing person some 15 times this year and he had called the Department of Child Safety recently to say he was living in Newtown Park.

Defence lawyer Kevin Rose told the court the lad said he returned to his grandmother's home where he was fed but he regularly ran away from his home and his carers didn't what else they could do.

The boy usually left the house while his carers were asleep, he said.

He was also prescribed medication for behavioural problems but his carers couldn't monitor him when he was living on the street.

The lad was on an intensive supervision order but he couldn't be supervised when missing from his safe home.

He was due to appear back in court on a number of charges on January 21.

Magistrate Damian Carroll said the boy's absconding was "very concerning" and it was simply unsafe for a 12-year-old to be living in parks and on the streets.

Mr Carroll told the lad that for his own safety his bail would be revoked and he would be remanded in custody to appear by video link on January 21.

Topics:  christmas jailed toowoomba

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