AN armed robber who held up a lone woman at a Warrnambool BP service station has been jailed for five-and-a-half years.
Travis Carman, 36, of Scott Road, Crossley, pleaded guilty in the County Court last week to one charge of armed robbery and one charge of possessing of an unregistered firearm.
He was yesterday sentenced to a non-parole period of three-and-a-half years.
In sentencing Judge Mark Gamble said the offending took place during a relapse into drug abuse and Carman’s motivation was to get money to buy drugs.
He said it was committed at night in a public place on a completely innocent victim who was trying to earn a living for her family.
He said the victim was isolated and most vulnerable and Carman used a gun to place her in extreme fear.
Judge Gamble said the woman had suffered a serious and adverse psychological and emotional impact.
He said it was to her credit that she was able to continue to work, despite experiencing flashbacks and being suspicious of customers.
He said she felt angry, afraid and suspicious and her relationships with family and friends had suffered.
Judge Gamble said Carman had pleaded guilty at an early stage, which had spared the community the cost of a trial and the victim the ordeal of a trial.
He said Carman was supported by family and friends and his prospects of rehabilitation were fair if he could overcome his drug problem.
Last week the court heard that on December 8, 2011 Carman and an accomplice went from Warrnambool to Carman’s parents’ Crossley home, where he forced open a gun cabinet and took a rifle and shotgun.
The pair then drove to Warrnambool, parked in Crawley Street and walked about 250 metres to a BP service station in west Warrnambool, taking one of the firearms with them.
Just after 5am they saw that a woman — the service station’s manager — had started work. Wearing hoodies, they put on face masks and rushed at the woman, Carman pointing the gun at her.
The woman was forced at gunpoint back into the building as the offenders yelled: “Get the money, get the money. Hurry up, hurry up”.
The two men stole $280 and a mobile telephone handset. The manager locked herself in the building and the offenders fled after being in the service station for about 90 seconds.
Carman, a shearer, handed himself in to Western Australia police in December last year after his picture featured in a Crime Stoppers alert.
He has already served 253 days in custody.
Carman was sentenced to five-and-a-half years’ jail, with a non-parole period of three-and-a-half years
But for his plea of guilty he would have been sentenced to seven years’ jail with a non-parole period of five years.