Dougherty admits shoplifting
A Palmerston North man who was given more than $800,000 from the Government after being wrongly convicted of rape has racked up a another criminal conviction.
David Dougherty, 47, served three years in prison for raping and abducting an 11-year-old girl - crimes he did not commit.
He was cleared at a 1997 retrial and subsequently awarded $868,728 in compensation.
He has regularly been through the courts since then, mainly for dishonesty offending.
In the Palmerston North District Court yesterday, he pleaded guilty to a charge of shoplifting.
On the afternoon of March 20, he walked into Pak'n Save on Ferguson St, Palmerston North.
He took a bladder of wine and a cooked chicken from the store, valued at $29.96.
He made no effort to pay for them, but was quickly caught by security.
Duty lawyer Richard Bedford said Dougherty had been coping well with his alcohol issues, but was given some bad news about a family member just before the offending.
"He has succumbed to the temptation."
Judge Gregory Ross said Dougherty had "relentlessly" offended most of his life, racking up convictions since the early 1980s.
"But there are times when you have not been in prison and lived in the community without offending.
"The trick is to understand what about you leads to that."
Dougherty was sentenced to 75 hours' community work and ordered to pay reparation for the stolen items.