There were online donations of over 2, 600 Australian dollars (1,890 U.S. dollars) to ease up the fine for a woman who was caught stealing a pack of tampons from a petrol station in Western Australia.
The police had on Thursday, October 15, 2015 fined the woman 500 dollars under a new state law that allows officers to give people who commit minor offences a fine rather than sending them to court.
Police in Coolgardie, 555 kilometres east of Perth, tweeted news of the fine as part of a community relations drive, but outrage quickly spread across the internet.
Reacting to the development, Amy Rust, coordinator for a women’s support group said: “it’s a crime in the first place to charge 6.75 dollars for tampons.’’
Rust, who explained the desperation that could warrant such theft, started a crowd-funding page to help the woman reached its 500-dollar target in just three hours.
A western Australian police spokesman said the woman’s fine was high because she had failed to appear in court on a previous occasion.
State Police Minister Liza Harvey defended the fine saying stealing of any kind was an offence for which the community has no tolerance.