Laura Rae Fischer got into a heated exchange with the Yeppoon store’s owner and a witness tried to intervene. GENERIC FILE PHOTO.
Laura Rae Fischer got into a heated exchange with the Yeppoon store’s owner and a witness tried to intervene. GENERIC FILE PHOTO.

Woman smashes items after gift shop laybuy dispute

A woman smashed in-store items during a heated laybuy dispute at a Yeppoon gift shop.

The incident led to Laura Rae Fischer, 34, pleading guilty in Yeppoon Magistrates Court last Thursday to wilful damage.

The court heard Fischer had attended the Coastal Funk store on February 6 where she was involved in a verbal dispute over an item she had placed on laybuy.

The item was put on laybuy last October and the owner of the business had since made multiple attempts to contact Fischer to complete the purchase, but received no response.

On February 6, the owner contacted Fischer for a final time to advise the item was going to be taken off laybuy.

Fischer then attended the store and demanded her deposit be returned.

The store owner told Fischer because the item had been on laybuy for more than six weeks, she was not required to give the money back.

However, the owner offered Fischer a voucher of $15 credit at the store.

Fischer accepted the voucher but continued to argue with the owner while she was writing out the voucher.

This led to the business owner deciding not to give Fischer the voucher and she tore it up in front of Fischer.

Fischer then grabbed two large candles, one in each hand, and threw them onto the floor.

This caused the tiles to crack and the glass containers holding the candles to shatter.

It also caused red wax to splatter on a nearby dress - damage which meant the garment was unable to be sold.

A witness in the store at the time saw Fischer lunge towards the shop owner but there was no charge in relation to that.

The witness bear-hugged Fischer to intervene but she broke free and punched the witness - again there was no charge in relation to that.

During a later police interview, Fischer made admissions about the incident.

In court, her solicitor said Fischer had suffered from a long-term depression disorder and at the time of the offence she had not taken her medication for five days.

Magistrate Philippa Beckinsale noted Fischer's history had no relevance to this type of offending.

Ms Beckinsale fined Fischer $500 and ordered she pay $524 restitution to the business.

No conviction was recorded.

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