Woman threatened with knife in Denmark armed robbery

Tim EdmundsAlbany Advertiser
Identity of robber in dispute.
Camera IconIdentity of robber in dispute. Credit: iStockphoto

A bottle shop attendant who was threatened with a large knife during an armed robbery at Denmark Tavern two years ago has told how she feared for her safety.

The woman was working alone at the bottle shop on Boxing Day, 2017 when she was confronted by the robber she said she believed “100 per cent” was a woman with a large fishing knife.

Rebekah May O’Neill is standing trial in the Supreme Court in Albany charged with the armed robbery, during which $763 and three bottles of spirits were stolen.

Giving evidence, the 48-year-old worker said a person entered the store wearing a long coat, brimmed hat, sunglasses and a white cloth over their face and demanded money from the till.

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“I reacted by obviously screaming and waving my hands,” she said.

“This person has screamed at me ‘I want the money, give me the money’.”

The employee said she was able to determine the robber was a woman after hearing her threats with the knife, later believing she also recognised the voice.

“(She was) very loud and aggressive and screaming at me to not look at her,” she said.

“It was very distinctive. I’m 100 per cent sure it was a female.

“I know I had heard that voice before somewhere. I can’t put the voice to a face but I have heard that voice.”

On the opening day of the trial yesterday, State prosecutor Gary Huggins told the jury the robbery only took about 30 seconds but the State would be able to prove the identity of the robber despite no witnesses to the incident.

He said the prosecution would rely on circumstantial evidence and civilian witnesses who would testify they later saw Ms O’Neill with the stolen money in the bag.

Defence counsel Bruno Illari said it was accepted an armed robbery occurred but the State would have to prove who committed the crime and urged the jury to study the evidence “forensically”.

“In dispute is the identity of the person who did it,” he said.

The trial continues.

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