17-year-old Armidale boy sentenced to 18 months in juvenile detention for Curtis Street affray, Rockvale Road assault with intent to rob

A TEENAGER will spend at least six months in juvenile detention for an affray and assaulting two men with intent to rob them at a local shopping centre.

The 17-year-old who cannot be identified appeared via video link in Armidale Children’s Court from Acmena juvenile detention centre and was supported by his grandmother and his girlfriend, as well as a representative from youth organisation, BackTrack, who provided a reference in support of the teen.

According to the facts, the teen went to a Curtis St house on March 5, and when the victim ran inside, he and “both co-accused have continued to yell and abuse and threaten the victim whilst banging on the windows."

The abuse continued for at least 15 minutes, before a window was broken and a door smashed, and the victims ran from the scene.

Shortly after he went to the Mountview Shopping Centre on Rockdale Rd.

About 7.45pm, the teen and two co-accused approached two men and asked for a cigarette.

One of the co-accused allegedly said to one of the victims that he’ll “shive ya” if they didn’t give him a wallet, after pointing a knife towards them.

Solicitor Chelsea Schaefer said her client had gone to the Curtis St address “in the taxi and the matter escalated from there”.

“This is a young person in the last six months, in all his endeavours, has tried to become an honourable person,” she said.

This is a young person in the last six months, in all his endeavours, has tried to become an honourable person.

Solicitor Chelsea Schaefer

She said he “has made quite remarkable and genuine efforts to rectify his way, and rectify his criminality”, and had helped to set up a “men’s youth support group where he acts a mentor for other detainees”.

Magistrate Michael Holmes said the offence “blots the copybook” after the teenager showed promising signs, according to his references.

He’s been in custody since his arrest on March 8. Police prosecutor Cheryl Hall said the two victims at the shopping centre were young, physical men.

“When the weapon came out they were very, very scared,” she said, but then they told officers they were angry.

“They were very, very angry that this would happen in Armidale.”

​The court heard the teenager had also broken into a local Armidale clinic on Cookes Rd on August 4, 2015, and stole goods.

When the weapon came out they were very, very scared ... they were very, very angry that this would happen in Armidale.

Police prosecutor Cheryl Hall

“It was fingerprint evidence that subsequently detected your involvement in that matter,” Mr Holmes said.

“I've examined your record … you were given chance after chance, after chance after chance.”

He said despite a letter of apology to the court, he believed the teen was “tiptoeing around your responsibility”.

I've examined your record … you were given chance after chance, after chance after chance.

Magistrate Michael Holmes

“There was very little remorse,” he told the court.

“The fact you will be an adult very shortly … it's a terrible shame that you've breached the trust.”

Mr Holmes said the incidents had “caused a lot of concern in the community”.

He sentenced him to 18 months in juvenile detention with a non-parole period of six months for affray, damaging property and two counts of assault with intent to rob.

The teen will be eligible for parole in September.