A 23-year-old has admitted the armed robbery of six hotels in Christchurch and South Canterbury, and shooting two women in a home invasion.
Douglas Anderson Roake, who had name suppression until his guilty pleas in the Christchurch District Court today, was charged with six aggravated robberies, two charges of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, and two of presenting a firearm.
Judge Gary MacAskill remand Roake in custody for sentencing on August 23.
He referred him for a restorative justice meeting, and ordered a pre-sentence report, and victim impact reports.
Police said that late on March 10 Roake went into the Tavern Harewood with his face covered, with a long barrelled pump action shotgun and a black plastic rubbish bag.
He approached the duty manager, telling him to put cash from the safe and gaming machines into the bag. He said “stay still and I won’t hurt anybody”. He pointed the shotgun – on which he had operated the pump action to load – at several patrons and staff, and left with over $18,000, but $2000 fell out of the bag as he left.
On March 14, at 10.30pm, Roake went to The Brickworks Bar, again disguised and carrying the same type of shotgun that he had bought that day.
He pointed the gun at the woman duty manager, and demanded she fill his black backpack with money. He told her, “You’re doing well ma’am”, and left with $43,000.
Ten days later Roake went to Trevino’s Restaurant and Bar at 11.40pm. He used the same disguise and a shotgun, and left with $29,708.
Five days later he went back to The Brickworks Bar and fired two shots at the locked door to get in. He approached the female duty manager and demanded money, leaving with $12,000.
On April 6 at 10.30pm he went to the Springston Hotel with a long barrelled SKS rifle which he had cut the stock off. He was disguised, and told patrons to “get on the ground, no-one will get hurt”, but also threatened several people that he would “blow their heads off”.
He asked the duty manager to empty the safe, but when she said she couldn’t, he fired a bullet into the ceiling, and asked her to remove the money from the gaming machines, and the TAB machine.
He fired another bullet into the ceiling, and took $10,000.
On April 19, about 10pm, he went to an address in Newtons Road Rolleston. He was heavily disguised and had a shotgun with a five round magazine, and a mallet.
The first woman he found was placing items in her car when he pointed the gun at her, and ordered her into the house, she managed to get away and phone police.
Roake fired two shots into the front door and went into the house where a mother and daughter were watching television. They confronted him in the kitchen, and he told them both to get on the floor. He demanded money and the keys for one of the cars.
The second victim refused to lie down and started to push Roake away and grab the firearm. During the struggle she pulled the balaclava off, and recognised him.
The third victim managed to run from the room and phone police, and her son who lived nearby.
Roake hit the second victim with the mallet on her head, and then shot her in the leg. She got up and started to run away from him, pleading with him that she did not want to die.
He fired another round into the kitchen roof, and struck her with the mallet at least six times.
The third victim returned and struck Roake over the head with an ornamental vase. He told her he was going to shoot her, and shot her in the stomach.
The son drove to the address and saw Roake pointing the firearm at his sister. Roake saw him through the window and pointed the firearm at his head. The man ran into the house and confronted Roake, who ran off as he had run out of ammunition.
Later that night he went to the Turf Bar at the Ashburton Hotel, where he confronted the restaurant supervisor in the outside courtyard. She ran towards the main bar and office telling patrons that they were being robbed by a man with a gun. Roake was still in the courtyard when he fired a bullet through the wall into the bar. He went into the bar and fired two shots into the till to try to open it. He found an unlocked safe in the office and took $1645. He went back to an address in the Raikaia Huts where he was arrested the following morning.