Eleven armed robberies met with police crackdown
AN alarming spate of armed robberies across the Ipswich district has triggered a police response to match.
In the past five months, detectives from the Ipswich Criminal Investigation Branch have charged 27 people in relation to all 11 armed robbery offences assigned to the unit.
Among the crimes solved was the robbery of the Bundamba Dominos Pizza shop - allegedly commited by six people who also targeted two service stations in Inala on the same night in October last year.
There was also the prolonged investigation into the terrifying home invasion at Pine Mountain in January, where a middle-aged couple was bashed and bound before having weapons and their vehicle stolen.
That investigation ended with the arrest of four men.
Officer in charge of the Ipswich CIB, Detective Senior Sergeant Heath McQueen, said his unit was above the state average in clearing armed and unarmed robbery offences - a statistic he attributed to the tenacity of the detectives and assistance of members of the public in providing good information.
"Armed robberies are an offence which carry a punishment of life imprisonment and often leave the victims of the offences traumatised for a long time after the offence has occurred," Snr Sgt McQueen said.
"The results we are achieving in solving these robberies is tremendous but ideally it would be better if there were less of these types of offences committed in the first place."
The bad run of robberies across Ipswich came on the back of a near-25% reduction in armed robbery in the area for the 2014-15 financial year - as reported in the QT last October.
While the increase in offences has taken the stats back to a level mirroring the previous year, police have at least managed to keep on top of it.
Snr Sgt McQueen said police were all-too aware of the root cause of the problem.
"In many cases offenders are desperate and often driven by drug addictions or vendettas against persons known to them, but the community can rest assured we are doing everything in our power to ensure they are apprehended and dealt with by the judicial system," he said.
Anyone with information should phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
- Offence: Dominos Pizza Shop Bundamba - Armed Robbery 24/10/2015; Result: (Solved) 6 persons arrested and charged on the 25/10/2015
- Offence: Winston Glades Bottleshop- Armed Robbery 21/11/2015; Result: (Solved) 3 persons arrested and charged on the 29/12/2015
- Offence: Riverview Foodstore - Armed Robbery 21/12/2015; Result: (Solved) 1 person arrested and charged
- Offence: Burglary/Armed Robbery Kholo - 07/01/2016; Result: (Solved) 6 persons charged from the 12th of January 2016
- Offence: Burglary/Armed Robbery Pine Mountain - 13/01/2016; Result: (Solved) 4 persons arrested and charged
- Offence: Car Jacking/Armed Robbery Camira - Armed Robbery 20/01/2016; Result: (Solved) 1 person arrested and charged
- Offence: Burglary/Armed Robbery - Goodna 05/02/2016; Result: (Solved) 1 person arrested and charged
- Offence: Burglary/Armed Robbery Leichhardt - 17/02/2016; Result: (Solved) 2 persons arrested and charged
- Offence: Peak Crossing Convenience Store - Armed Robbery 29/02/2016; Result: (Solved) 1 person arrested and charged
- Offence: Ozfuel Service Station Yamanto 11/03/2016; Result: (Solved) 1 person arrested and charged 15/03/2016
- Offence: Burglary/Armed Robbery Leichhardt - 17/03/2016; Result: (Solved) 1 person charged