Replica gun­man im­pris­oned

DRUG DEBT THREATS LED TO PHAR­MACY ROB­BERY

Weekend Courier - - Front Page -

at the Shoalwater Shop­ping Cen­tre.

Ken­ward and his co-ac­cused were parked in the carpark of the cen­tre be­fore Ken­ward got out while the other per­son al­legedly waited in the car.

En­ter­ing the phar­macy, Ken­ward was armed with a small black replica hand­gun as he ap­proached two phar­macy em­ploy­ees. The fe­male man­ager was con­fronted by Ken­ward, who pointed the hand­gun di­rectly at her while shout­ing de­mands for her to open the till.

He con­tin­ued to shout at her while she went to the till and took about $1700 from it, which she handed to Ken­ward.

He then fled the store and got in the car, where his co-ac­cused was al­legedly wait­ing to drive him away.

The whole in­ci­dent was cap­tured on CCTV. Ken­ward was iden­ti­fied by the footage and ar­rested on De­cem­ber 12 at the Warn­bro Shop­ping Cen­tre.

He made full ad­mis­sions after be­ing ar­rested by detectives that day.

Judge Joseph McGrath said the 29-year-old had co-op­er­ated by giv­ing in­for­ma­tion re­lat­ing to his of­fend­ing. He said a pre-sen­tence re­port said Ken­ward’s mo­ti­va­tion for the of­fence was a drug debt that he had been threat­ened to pay.

“Whilst you ex­pressed em­pa­thy to­wards the vic­tims and re­morse, the au­thor of the pre-sen­tence re­port was of the view that you failed to recog­nise how your de­ci­sions have led to the cur­rent of­fend­ing… that you had a lack of in­sight into your be­haviour. The pre-sen­tence re­port also noted you have a history of sub­stance abuse and neg­a­tive as­so­ci­a­tions,” he said.

He ac­cepted a let­ter from Ken­ward that showed he later ac­cepted the trauma his ac­tions had caused the vic­tims.

“The drug debt is wholly a con­se­quence of your de­ci­sion to use drugs and cer­tainly is not a fac­tor in mit­i­ga­tion,” he said.

“The of­fence is se­ri­ous. The of­fend­ing was com­mit­ted on vul­ner­a­ble work­ers. The of­fend­ing was pre­med­i­tated. You ar­ranged the co-ac­cused as the driver.”

Judge McGrath said per­sonal and gen­eral de­ter­rence were taken into ac­count for sen­tenc­ing.

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