An armed robber jammed a gun in his victim's face.
An armed robber jammed a gun in his victim's face. mtreasure

Gympie armed robber jammed gun in victim's face

A LIFT into town for $20 soon became a nightmare for the 18-year-old victim of serial armed robber James Denning and his then girlfriend Anna-Leise Jane Giffin, who pleaded guilty to separate charges in Gympie District Court this week.

The court heard the pair, with an unidentified third person, picked up the teenager in their car early on the morning of February 28 last year.

Denning, 21, identified as the "principal offender” who directed and carried out the armed robbery, reportedly told Giffin, the driver, to turn toward the "rock pools” on their way in to Gympie.

Upon arriving at the isolated site, the court heard Denning got out of the car and told the teenager he could "do it the easy way or the hard way”.

Denning punched the teen in the face, prompting him to hand over his phone and wallet, before producing a gun described as a sawn-off rifle, and jamming the barrel against his face and cutting his lip.

Denning then told him he was "hiding things”. The victim took off his shirt and shorts in an attempt to prove he wasn't, and Denning told him to run.

The court was told the victim heard a gunshot as he ran, which Judge Glen Clash said inferred the gun was real.

The victim ran until he was out of breath, turned and saw the car was gone and then got help from residents of a nearby house before police were called.

Judge Cash told Denning, who committed the offence while on parole for another armed robbery with a knife in October 2016, deserved a "more serious” punishment for his role as the ringleader.

He was sentenced to four years' jail to be served cumulatively with the two-and-a-half year term he received for the previous armed robbery, while not eligible for parole until August 20.

Giffin, now 24, was sentenced to three years jail with immediate release on parole for armed robbery in company.

Judge Cash noted 357 days of pre-sentence custody in handing her the two-year parole term.

Gympie Times


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