A Northland teenager who terrorised staff during an armed robbery of Dargaville Warehouse and stole more than $242,000 worth of jewellery and $27,600 in cash and cheques has been jailed for nearly six years.
Kaipara Anderson, was sentenced in the Whangarei District Court yesterday after previously pleading guilty to five charges of kidnapping, and charges of aggravated robbery and possession of cannabis for supply.
Eighteen at the time of the aggravated robbery on May 28 last year Anderson and another male, who is still going through the court process, put on balaclavas and armed themselves with weapons.
The duo went to the rear of the business about 11pm and confronted the five staff members who had gathered in the administration area. Anderson armed himself with a screwdriver and a pair of scissors and his alleged associate had a cut-down .22 calibre rifle.
Two staff members were threatened and led to a toilet area where they were ordered to face the wall and their hands bound with an electrical cord. Shortly after, three other employees entered the office and were also taken to the toilet and bound.
Anderson's alleged accomplice demanded the shift manager lead him to the safe and once it was opened, all the cash and jewellery were placed into a bag.
Cash and cheques were stolen worth $27,612. The total retail value of the roughly 300 items of jewellery was $242,805.
The shift manager's arms and hands were bound with sticky tape and taken back to the toilet. The duo left after stealing a handbag containing an e-cigarette, a bangle, a cellphone, torch charger, $125 cash, vehicle keys and an SD card, all valued at about $800.
Judge Keith de Ridder said the victims were able to free themselves from the bindings and called police. Police later stopped a vehicle with Anderson in it and a search revealed an amount of cannabis.
"It was a terrifying experience and there was significant and ongoing trauma for all five," he said.
"No doubt the memory of what you two did that night will be with them for a very long time."
A probation report indicated Anderson was "down on his luck" and strapped for cash and the robbery was a way of getting easy money.
Judge de Ridder said Anderson was not the ring leader but knew full well what was going on and he had plenty of opportunities to back out but willingly went along.
Crown lawyer Catherine Anderson said while Anderson pleaded guilty at an early stage there seemed to be no remorse of late.
Defence lawyer Nick Leader said that was not the case and Anderson had attended two restorative justice hearings with victims, had written letters of apology to the victims and the judge and had taken courses while in custody.
Judge de Ridder was satisfied Anderson was remorseful and gave a significant reduction because of his youth and early guilty pleas. Anderson was jailed for 5 years and 10 months and ordered to pay $200 reparation.