Lovers stole $30,000 in four days
A COUPLE who committed a “Bonnie and Clyde” string of terrifying armed robberies across Ipswich have been sentenced to eight years jail.
Evelyn Christine Gwilliams and Trevor Charles Fish robbed a post office, a pizza store and a golf club during a four-day spree in September last year, stealing more than $30,000.
Fish stormed into the Amberley post office on September 17 holding a replica pistol over his head, with a scarf wrapped around his face while Gwilliams stood watch.
Security footage of the brazen robbery showed Fish standing on the counter, demanding money from a terrified woman while pointing the gun in her face.
The pair fled the scene in a stolen car with about $800, throwing their clothing out the window and Gwilliams later torched the car in Redbank.
Ipswich District Court heard that on September 19 Gwilliams and Fish went to Domino’s at Brassall about 12.30am armed with a black children’s toy gun and demanded a delivery driver lay on the floor.
Gwilliams then forced the store manager to take him to the safe where she became hysterical.
Crown Prosecutor Kellie Jones said Gwilliams repeatedly told the woman “I can’t handle this” and helped himself to a soft drink from the fridge before the couple left with about $500.
The next day the couple stormed the Ipswich Golf Club about 9.30pm armed with a large sword and a replica handgun after Fish kicked in the glass front doors.
The pair forced a man to lie on his stomach and asked a female employee to do likewise, but she said she could not as she was eight-months pregnant.
Fish made the woman open the safe and the couple made off with $31,194, which they later spent on drugs.
Mrs Jones said the couple had an extensive criminal history, which included Fish’s 41 convictions for burglaries and Gwilliams’ five-page history for dishonesty offences.
“Rehabilitation is unlikely in a case such as this given the recidivism,” Mrs Jones said.
“Fish showed a sense of calmness during the offending which would’ve caused a great level of terror for the victims.”
Gwilliams and Fish pleaded guilty to three charges of entering a premises with intent, one armed robbery and two armed robberies in company.
Fish, 36, also pleaded guilty to two charges of breaking and entering a premises, unlawful use of a motor vehicle and two charges of entering a premises with intent.
Gwilliams, 28, also pleaded guilty to four unlawful use of motor vehicle charges and five stealing charges.
The couple were given sentences of two and three years jail for the lesser offences and eight years for each armed robbery – to be served at the same time.
They were also declared serious violent offenders – although Gwilliams escaped the declaration for the post office robbery as she had remained outside the premises.
Mr West said the couple were extremely close and committed the robberies together because they “shared their lives”.
“Ms Gwilliams and Mr Fish are deeply, emotionally attached,” Mr West said.
“They are an archetypal pair for life.”
During the court case the couple sat together in the dock weeping, whispering to each other, hugging and holding hands.
Mr West said at the time of the offences the pair were addicted to drugs and Gwilliams was spending about $500 each day on speed, $400 on heroin and $100 on ecstasy.
Judge Gregory Koppenol said the robberies would have been traumatic and terrifying for the victims.
Gwilliams told the court she wanted to say sorry to the people she had hurt.