The night machete-wielding crim terrorised Gympie family
IT WAS labelled a "terrifying yet bizarre" home invasion which left a young Gympie family fearing for their lives and involved police in an eight-hour siege on the evening of August 1, last year.
Tallen Steven Hames, 28, of Gympie was jailed for his role in the events of that night, while his co-accused Cody Steven Hazelgrove, 37, of Gympie will be sentenced sometime next week due to COVID-19 procedures.
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They both appeared via videolink during Gympie District Court proceedings yesterday.
Hames pleaded guilty to burglary in the night with violence while armed, break and enter, trespassing, dangerous driving and possession of dangerous drugs while Hazelgrove pleaded guilty to trespassing, entering a dwelling with intent while armed and in company and damaging property.
The court heard how Hames acted erratically after he thought the victim of his last home invasion was following his Subaru Forrester when he lost control and crashed into a fence just after 10pm on August 1 in Louisa St.
Along with Hazelgrove, the two fled the scene before jumping one fence and climbing another fence.
Police were called and conducted patrols.
Hames was already serving an accumulated sentence of 9.5 years for similar offences.
It was noted throughout the proceedings that Hames and Hazelgrove had no intentions to harm or to rob the occupants of the house.
"The mother heard the crash and went out with her daughter and they saw the defendants walk over their fence into the yard.
"The defendants spoke to her and asked where the street was and locked the door and woke her husband," prosecutor Katrina Overell said.
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Police were soon called.
The two men stayed near the carport with one carrying a tyre spanner.
The woman's husband saw the two men peering through his car window and asked them what they were doing.
"He told them "what the f--- do you think you're doing near my car?" We don't want any trouble."
Hames then walked towards the complainant with a machete and made a stabbing motion with it.
The Gympie dad then told his wife that the man had a knife and they should escape.
Their son was still locked inside his bedroom so the family had to re-enter the house to get their son before they left unharmed.
Police arrived at the scene where they soon discovered all the doors were locked and windows shut.
"The dining room table was used to block the doors," she said.
A negotiator was called in to de-escalate the situation.
At 7am the following day, Hazelgrove handed himself to police and was arrested and treated at the scene by paramedics.
About 40 minutes later, Hames handed himself to police. He told the police that he had fallen asleep at the house.
Upon handing down his sentence, QC Judge Bernard Porter said it was an unusual case.
"There needs to be a strong deterrence in home invasions," he said.
"A weapon was used to intimidate the complainants and that two young children were involved in this.
"The terror of the 14-year-old boy who was locked inside his room. It can only be hoped that if they are in a loving and supportive environment, they can cope with the experience."
Hames would have received a four-year jail term but for factors involving totality, received a year-and-a-half jail sentence.
He will be able to be released on parole on April 2, 2021.
His co-accused Hazelgrove was adjourned for sentencing next week.