10 years for 90-minute crime spree

A man claimed to have been ‘blacked out’ on methadone, ice, alcohol and cannabis when he robbed a pharmacy with a shotgun

Gregory Ian Garvey has been jailed for 10 years and six months for the robbery of the pharmacy as well as a number of other offences committed over only 90 minutes in October last year.

According to the Newcastle Herald, Mr Harvey took methadone, half a gram of ice and a gram of cannabis, as well as drinking a bottle of port.

He then brought a shortened 12-gauge shotgun and a kitchen knife to an IGA at Telarah, where he threatened an employee and took cash and a packet of cigarettes.

He then drove to The Junction in Newcastle – around a 40km trip – where he went to a pharmacy and used the shotgun to threaten two women.

One of the women, a pharmacist, was heavily pregnant at the time.

As well as stealing methadone from the pharmacy, he also took items belonging to the pharmacy’s employees.

Mr Garvey then drove north, making it as far as Heatherbrae. On the way, he crashed into a garbage truck, losing control of his car.

Next, he drove to a service station and pointed the shotgun at a man who was filling up his own car, and attempted to steal the vehicle, before police arrived.

Mr Garvey resisted arrest, attempting to take hold of one of the police officers’ guns and trying to use a police baton to hit them.

Mr Garvey, who has reportedly spent “nearly all” of his adult life in jail, was handed a sentence of 10 years and six months. He will be eligible for parole in 2024, after six years and six months have been served.

The judge, Tim Gartelmann, observed that Mr Garvey’s victims had each outlined experiencing “fear and stress” and were coping with continuing effects of trauma due to his actions.

Readers who are distressed can contact the Pharmacists’ Support Service on 1300 244 910.

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