VAN SHOT: Two New Zealand tourists received a fright.
VAN SHOT: Two New Zealand tourists received a fright. Maddelin McCosker

Campervan shooting: Victim felt second bullet pass lips

THE victim of a random shooting said he felt a bullet fly past his lips as he sat in his campervan parked in Rockhampton.

Police prosecutor Jess King said "it was astounding that the victim wasn't killed" in the August 13 incident at Nuttall St, Parkhurst, near the Rockhampton Music Bowl.

She described the incident as "deliberate, callous and comprehensively reckless".

"It must have been a terrifying ordeal for the people in the campervan," Ms King said.

She said Carl Krijt was holidaying with his partner Paula Le Compte when they parked on August 12. The New Zealand couple woke to a loud bang and a bullet hitting the back of their campervan.

Mr Krijt sat up and a second shot was fired through the windscreen of the vehicle.

"The victim felt something pass his lips," Ms King said.

He grabbed his partner, both fell to the floor and phoned 000.

Ms King said the woman noted a car parked in front of the van with its headlights pointed at them.

Police found the second bullet in the kitchen of the van with analysts deeming it only just missed Mr Krijt.

CCTV footage showed the vehicle driven by the shooter take off and enter McDonald's at Stockland where police identified the driver as James George Demarco.

 

James George Demarco.
James George Demarco. Photo contributed ROK230516court

Magistrate Cameron Press said the evidence showed the act was deliberate.

"You have terrorized these caravanners," he said. "Two people on holiday in a campervan were nearly maimed or killed."

Demarco, 20, yesterday pleaded guilty in Rockhampton Magistrates Court to 16 charges including dangerous conduct of a weapon, unlawful possession of a rifle, three driving without a licence, two fail to stop when directed, two of possessing a knife, possessing methamphetamines, possessing marijuana, stealing a car, receiving tainted property, two possession of drug utensils, and possessing ammunition.

The offences were committed between May 1 and August 14 and have been added to Demarco's seven-page criminal record.

He was spotted driving a stolen vehicle and drove off when police pursued him on May 1.

Days before the shooting, he stole a hire car, caused damage to it and sped off from police at the Moores Creek Rd/Fey St roundabout.

When police arrested Demarco, they found him asleep at a Koongal address in possession of 27 rounds of .22 ammunition along with spent ammunition.

Defence lawyer Samantha Legrady said Demarco moved in with friends when he was 12 years old and started using meth. He has never had a job.

Ms King said due to Demarco's repeat and escalating offending, his prospects of rehabilitation were "non-existent".

His history before yesterday includes dangerous operation of a motor vehicle in December 2015, three stealing cars, three possess knives in public places, six possess dangerous drugs, serious assault in 2016, and failing to stop.

Demarco has breached probation orders, suspended sentences and parole.

"He has a total disregard for other people's property," Ms King said.

"This defendant poses an extreme risk to the community."

Mr Press gave Demarco two years with parole release on April 13, 2019, declaring 80 days' pre-sentence custody for the dangerous operation of a rifle and six month's prison, wholly suspended and operational for three years for the first failing to stop a motor vehicle charge.

He also disqualified him from driving for four years and two months and ordered to pay $2978.32 in restitution.



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