A 21-year-old father of two young children was sent to prison for five years three months for the armed holdups of two petrol stations, and an attempted robbery at a liquor store.
Te Arimoana Jamyle Simon’s three-day spree started at Caltex Yaldhurst on November 5 where he had his face and head concealed with a black t-shirt.
He presented a dark coloured airpistol – now known to be plastic – at a man and told him to tip the $855 contents of the till into his backpack.
On November 7 he entered Super Liquor in Harewood Road but did not cover his face.
The person there saw the pistol wasn’t real and refused his demands, so Simon made out it was a prank and left.
Later the same night he went into Mobil Redwood with an 18 inch knife.
This time he was given $167, and waved the knife at the person there when he said he couldn’t open the safe. He took 27 tobacco packets worth $1275.
Defence counsel John Brandts-Giesen said Simon was genuinely remorseful and had written letters to his victims apologising to them.
He was in difficult financial straits after a relationship broke up and he was left with two young children whose mother left them behind, and had not contacted them since, he said.
He was trying to help his family, but did it in a confused state, and while in a state of some despair.
Crown prosecutor Kathy Basire said she was told Simon had been using synthetic cannabis, but was living with extended family who were helping him with his children.
Judge Brian Callaghan said offending like this was often explained by people needing money for drugs, or under the influence of drugs.
He sentenced Simon to five years three months prison, read him the first of the three strikes warning for repeat violent offenders and ordered reparation of $2297 to the two petrol stations.