Pair jailed for New Year's robbery

Two youths who used a knife to rob young women on the streets of Mt Maunganui on New Year's Day have been jailed for five years.

Jesse Walker and Lance Bush appeared for sentence in Tauranga District Court today on three charges each of aggravated robbery, one of burglary and one of unlawfully taking a motor vehicle.

Judge Thomas Ingram warned the teenagers - who started off this year breaking into a Hamilton house, stealing a car, and holding up three women with a kitchen knife at night - that their criminal records put them "on the cusp" of preventive detention.

Crown prosecutor Catherine Harold said Walker jumped out of the car and threatened the first victim with a 15 cm-long bladed knife. He waved it in front of her face, demanding money and taking her handbag.

Within 15 minutes, two more young women walking along enjoying the New Year celebrations were accosted in a similar way.

Bush and Walker then led police on a five to seven minute chase through congested residential streets reaching speeds of up to 100kmh.

The judge said Walker had "some 10 pages of court records."

Since first appearing before the Youth Court in 2005, he had clocked up well over 70 offences including burglary, car conversion and failing to stop for police.

Judge Ingram said Bush - with six pages of prior convictions - also had been before the court over a long period of time.

Although he had not been the one with the knife, it was not appropriate to treat Bush any differently from his co-offender.

"You were every bit as much a participant as Walker was," the judge said.

In addition five years jail for the three counts of aggravated robbery, Judge Ingram imposed two years for burglary and two years for unlawfully taking a motor vehicle. Both will serve those terms concurrently.

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