By Cam Lucadou-Wells
A 32-year-old mother has been jailed for her role in a terrifying armed robbery on two female staff at a Doveton supermarket.
Pregnant and wired on ice, Suzzane Calgaret hadn’t slept for nearly two weeks when she, her sister and brother-in-law stormed into the Food Works store in Autumn Place on Saturday 3 February 2019, a court has heard.
Calgaret was armed with a stove lighter and sister Heather with a metal pole as they made threats and demanded cigarettes.
She spat at one of the staff, as her sister threatened to strike the attendants with the pole.
Cigarettes were stolen, reportedly to use in a mix for smoking cannabis.
The brother-in-law Narzzouli Togo had been arrested for shop-theft at the supermarket the day before.
He returned to the store slightly ahead of his co-offenders, demanding cigarettes that he said he’d been promised the previous day.
Calgaret told police she didn’t remember taking in a lighter. She was “just backing my sister up, like, family”.
“I think my brother-in-law yelled out to my sister … and all of a sudden we just stormed into IGA and Heather was yelling abuse. I was yelling at the ladies too.”
Her younger sister Heather told police that Calgaret was a bad influence. They used the stolen cigarettes in a mix for smoking cannabis.
One of the staff told police she was in fear for her life, the other was shocked and “extremely” scared.
On 27 August, County Court of Victoria judge David Sexton said armed robbers often preyed on “unsuspecting” “soft targets” at work such as supermarket attendants.
Calgaret had a “prominent role” in a robbery with “no real pre-planning” and the use of “rudimentary weapons”, Judge Sexton said.
With a “menacing demeanour”, her spitting was a “deplorable”, “degrading” and “completely unnecessary” common-law assault.
Calgaret was on a community corrections order at the time.
She’d previously served jail and CCOs for assaults, bail offences and family violence, had mental health admissions and a “problematic” history of substance abuse.
Judge Sexton noted her moral culpability was reduced due to mental health issues and chronic history of traumas, including “profound deprivation and disadvantage” as a child.
Calgaret had made the “most of her time” in custody, taking “positive steps” such as taking rehabilitative courses. She’d also expressed genuine, heart-felt remorse.
Calgaret’s sister was earlier jailed for up to two years and four months.
Togo, with a longer relevant criminal history, was jailed for up to three years.
Calgaret was jailed for 18 months, followed by an 18 month treatment-focused CCO with supervision and judicial monitoring.
During the CCO, Calgaret will be barred from associating with her co-offending sister and brother-in-law.
Her jail term includes 417 days spent in pre-sentence remand.