CCTV footage from IGA Wandal. Photo Contributed
CCTV footage from IGA Wandal. Photo Contributed

Juvenile gang member in IGA armed robbery also stole 10 cars

A TEEN gang member involved in a crime spree across Rockhampton which included stealing cars and armed robbery with violence of the Wandal IGA last year, has been jailed.

The recidivist offender was sentenced in Rockhampton District Court yesterday for more than 35 charges for his role in the robbery, along with stealing 10 cars and driving them around unlicensed while smoking drugs with his gang.

This offending was part of a 16-month crime spree, while the boy was aged 14 and 15, which involved breaking into homes and businesses to steal, along with obstruct police and drive unlicensed.

OTHER JUVENILE CRIME STORIES:

Teen girls who terrorised Rocky warned of 10-year jail terms

‘Fast and furious’ attempted armed robbery by juveniles

Teen car thief: ‘Stealing is easier than earning money’

Detention for teen with over 100 charges

The teen, now 15, had been taken to juvenile custody to serve out a sentence for an attempted robbery.

Read about his original offending, which included the attempted armed robbery, here: Four teens, 18 offence incidents, about 100 charges

After he was released, he reoffended, was taken back, released again and reoffend leading to more time on remand.

“You don’t join a gang and try to rob people,” Judge Leanne Clare said.

“The fact that you reoffend so quickly after release (from detention) shows you are determined to reoffend.”

The teen also threw a toothbrush at a detention staff member at some point during the 285 days he spent either serving a sentence or on remand.

He was one of eight who robbed the Wandal IGA on June 23, 2019.

Wandal IGA.
Wandal IGA.

READ MORE: Boy, 12, followed lead of older kids in attempted robbery

“You had a planned pack attack,” Judge Clare said.

Five juveniles entered the store while the others stood watch outside.

CCTV footage from IGA Wandal. Photo Contributed
CCTV footage from IGA Wandal. Photo Contributed

The defendant brandished a tree branch and swung it at two staff members, while other juveniles picked up broomsticks and turned them into weapons.

Read more here: WATCH: Masked youths armed with broomsticks rob supermarket

A young male staff member was beaten by two offenders behind the counter, with one of the female juveniles serving time in detention for the assault and robbery.

While the boy was being beaten, another teen stole cigarettes and tried to open the cash register to steal cash.

The boy was left with cuts and bruises.

Manager Karen Ross at Wandal IGA spoke with The Morning Bulletin the day after the attack on her staff members.
Manager Karen Ross at Wandal IGA spoke with The Morning Bulletin the day after the attack on her staff members.

The gang ran off with the cigarettes.

At the time of the robbery, the male offender was on probation and bail.

“You were only 14 or 15 when you were driving these stolen cars around town, smoking drugs in them,” Judge Clare said.

Pre-sentence reports showed the teen boy had issues engaging with authority organisations and associated with criminal peers.

He showed low-level victim impact empathy, showing it when prompted through scenarios involving his family members.
“He has served time (in detention), but it’s had very little impact on him … very little progress,” Judge Clare said.

“Sadly you have shown strong resistance to change.”

She said it was getting close to the end of the line for this defendant, but a Restorative Justice Order may be “the only thing to get through to him”.

“You can’t have endless number of chances,” Judge Clare said.

“You can’t keep hurting people.”

She sentenced the juvenile to 12 months’ detention to serve 75 per cent, a Restorative Justice Order and a conviction recorded for the armed robbery, and two years’ probation and convictions recorded for the other offences.



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