A Coast carjacker will spend just 12 months behind bars.
A Coast carjacker will spend just 12 months behind bars. Brenda Strong GLA050913NIFE

Drugged up carjacker will only serve 12 months

A WOMAN who went on a drug-fuelled rampage, which included an armed carjacking, will only serve one year of her four-year sentence after a judge determined her difficult upbringing was partly to blame.

Sarah Jane Denman, 30, had "especially high" levels of amphetamine and methamphetamine in her system and was on three sets of bail when she committed the serious crimes in November last year.

The mother-of-one pleaded guilty to 13 offences in Maroochydore District Court including single counts of dangerous operation of a vehicle, attempted unlawful use of a vehicle, armed robbery and serious assault.

The court heard police began to chase Denman when they saw her driving erratically on Caloundra Rd, Landsborough in a car that had no number plates.

During the pursuit, Denman crashed into a woman's car on Steve Irwin Way, with such force it was forced up onto two wheels before falling back down.

A man who pulled over to help her was rewarded by almost being car-jacked, but he managed to stop Denman taking his vehicle.

She then unsuccessfully tried to take other vehicles before she approached a woman's car and threatened her with a 15cm double-bladed knife, saying "get out of the car, c---- or I will stab you".

The woman complied and Denman drove off in the van which was later found with her fingerprints on it.

When police found Denman, a struggle ensued and pepper spray was used - she has been in prison ever since.

Defence barrister Kylie Hillard told the court her client had a "difficult" upbringing as her mother had mental illness which included delusions.

Denman also suffered through a violent relationship which led to her living in a refuge for three months.

Judge Glen Cash said the crimes would usually warrant the perpetrator to serve a third of their sentence, but said the mitigating circumstances of Denman's upbringing warranted less time behind bars.

"Whatever predisposition existed, it was made infinitely worse by methamphetamine use."

Denman was ordered to a head sentence of four years' imprisonment which will be suspended in November for an operational period of five years.

She will also be subjected to probation for two years.



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