Boyfriend of robbery victim’s daughter to stand trial
THE man accused of trying to rob a shop owned by his girlfriend's mother will have to stand trial in court, despite his girlfriend trying to take back a statement she gave to police in which she alleged he was the robber.
Mark John Dobson is alleged to have attempted to rob Fraser Shores Seafood on November 2 last year with a male companion.
The owner, Colleen Gamble, fought back and said she wrestled one of the men towards a vat of hot oil.
Mr Dobson was later arrested and charged, with the police relying on DNA evidence and a statement from his girlfriend, Christina Gamble.
This week in Hervey Bay Magistrates Court, however, Christina Gamble said the statement in which she said Mr Dobson admitted to trying to rob her mother's store was false and it was bullied out of her by police officers.
Ms Gamble said she was threatened and told to "come up with a story to incriminate him (Mr Dobson)".
"I felt like I had no choice," she said.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Nicole Kunkel scoffed at this suggestion and played the recording of Ms Gamble's interview with police.
"There's clearly no threat, is there?" Snr Const Kunkel asked, after the entire tape was played with no threatening language heard at all.
Ms Gamble said the threats came before the recording.
"You're lying to the court, aren't you?" Snr Const Kunkel asked.
"I wouldn't lie...I'm a child of God," Ms Gamble replied.
Mr Dobson's solicitor, John Milburn, asked for bail for his client, which was refused by Magistrate Graeme Tatnell.
Mr Milburn said that if the prosecution could not rely on the statement of Ms Gamble, it left the case against Mr Dobson "very thin".
Snr Const Kunkel said there was also DNA and other evidence in the prosecution case.
Mr Tatnell said there was nothing to suggest any wrongdoing by the police when it came to the statement of Ms Gamble.
Mr Tatnell said there was nothing at all on that tape that assisted Ms Gamble in her allegations of police intimidation.
He committed the case through for trial in the District Court, to be heard at a date to be determined later.