Long Gully armed robbery committed six months after man released from prison for defensive homicide

A BENDIGO man who committed an armed robbery on a sick Long Gully man had been released from an eight-year prison term for defensive homicide just six months earlier, a court has heard.

Jason Andrew Baxter, 33, and co-accused Georgina McAlpine, 33, were sentenced in the County Court in Melbourne on Tuesday in relation to the incident on December 18 last year.

The court was told McAlpine knocked on her 55-year-old neighbour’s front door and offered to sell him drugs.

When the victim refused, Baxter entered the house and punched him in the face causing him to fall to the ground. Baxter stood over the victim and produced a silver knife which he held to the man’s chest.

The victim told them where to find his wallet, which McAlpine retrieved before they both left the address. The wallet contained bank and ID cards, along with $250 cash which the pair spent on drugs.

The man suffered bruising to his left cheek and eye and a small laceration to his shoulder.

McAlpine was spotted on CCTV later that day stealing the number plates from a car parked in Kennington.

She was arrested the next day and denied knowledge of the armed robbery.

Baxter fled police in North Bendigo before he was arrested in a nearby backyard. He also denied the robbery, but later confessed.

The victim had only just been discharged from hospital when the robbery occurred, and has since passed away.

The court heard Baxter was released from jail in June, 2016, after serving eight years for defensive homicide. He had endured an abusive upbringing at the hands of his father, who was a convicted double murderer.

McAlpine also sustained significant abuse as a young child.

Both were regular ice and heroin users.

Judge Frank Gucciardo said there was no evidence of pre-planning of the crime, but the incident would have left the victim “terrified”.

“Injury inflicted with armed menace to a vulnerable victim… is reprehensible,” he said.

“He would not only in his weakened state have suffered pain and distress, but would have been terrified.”

Baxter was sentenced to three years and nine months prison with a non-parole period of two years and four months. He has served 329 days.

McAlpine was placed on an 18-month community corrections order, having already served the duration of her sentence.