‘Dazza and Shazza’ jailed for bank robbery

A couple who robbed a Gold Coast bank to pay ice debts - and took in a homeless man while on the run in luxury hotels - just want to live a "simple life" with kids and a mortgage.

Darren Michael Baxter, 31, and Shayde Hodgson-Gulson, 23 - who went by "Dazza and Shazza" - stormed the Burleigh Waters Suncorp Bank dressed in motorcycle helmets, gloves and black jackets on September 26 last year.

Baxter was armed with a fake pistol and Hodgson-Gulson was holding a black bag as if she was holding a rifle when they stormed the bank. It had no customers, but five staff inside.

The Southport District Court heard the pair was "fried on ice" as Baxter ran to the tellers and Hodgson-Gulson kept a lookout.

The court heard Baxter pointed a fake pistol at a worker and told them to fill up a laptop bag with money. They fled with $5925.

They rode off on a motorbike, later dumped in a carpark. A fingerprint of Baxter's linked him to the crime.

The pair were arrested at Peppers Broadbeach three days later where the fake pistol, and ice was found. $1200 of the money was recovered.

The pair pleaded guilty on Thursday to one count each of armed robbery.

 

 

CCTV still from the robbery of a Burleigh Waters bank
CCTV still from the robbery of a Burleigh Waters bank

Judge Catherine Muir said: "It was premeditated … you had gone there the day before and you still had the forethought to disguise yourself with helmets and to cover up items that you were pretending to be weapons. It's reprehensible behaviour."

Judge Muir accepted the pair were remorseful.

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Last year it was revealed a homeless man dubbed 'Sonny' - unaware the couple were involved in a stick up hours before he met them - was befriended by them and stayed with them in hotels for three days where they ordered room service and took him clothes shopping.

The court heard the couple were engaged.

Baxter's Barrister James Mcnab told the court his client wanted to break a cycle of drug use, have a "simple life" with his partner, get a job, have kids and a mortgage. He said at Baxter, previously jailed for armed robbery, was addicted to ice at the time and had used 15g of ice in 10 days.

 

Bank robbers Shayde Hodgson-Gulson and Darren Michael Baxter. Photo: Facebook
Bank robbers Shayde Hodgson-Gulson and Darren Michael Baxter. Photo: Facebook

"I'm further instructed those drugs he had were purchased on credit, or 'tick' from an outlaw motorcycle gang. And indeed the robbery was committed in an essence to satisfy that debt."

The court heard Baxter and Hodgson-Gulson had troubled upbringings.

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Judge Muir sentenced Hodgson-Gulson to 4.5 years, with parole on December 29, 2020. She was given earlier parole to spend time in a rehabilitation facility.

Baxter, who also pleaded guilty to 18 summary offences, was given a head sentence of six years jail, with parole on June 29, 2021.

Both had spent 291 days in custody which was deemed time already served.

Originally published as 'Dazza and Shazza' jailed for bank robbery



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