Gladstone Court House at Yarroon St.
Gladstone Court House at Yarroon St. Brenda Strong GLA281013CORT

Former couple sentenced over shocking home invasion

A FORMER couple who drove to a woman's house and broke down her front doors in a violent home invasion were sentenced to jail terms when they appeared in Gladstone Magistrates Court yesterday.

Ricky James Allen, 30, and Samantha Skye Lord, also 30, each pleaded guilty to burglary and committing an indictable offence.

Allen also pleaded guilty to an unrelated drug charge.

The court was told the pair, who were previously in a relationship but were on good terms, drove to the woman's house on the evening of January 24 after she hung up on an intoxicated Allen during an argument, then ignored 20 further calls.

When the pair arrived at the house, the woman tried to close the screen door on them, but Allen grabbed it and pulled it off its hinges, falling backwards.

After the woman used that opportunity to shut and lock the main wooden door to the house, Lord kicked that door open, punched the woman in the head and repeatedly punched and kicked her after she fell to the ground.

When a man inside the house began to approach Lord, Allen entered the house and punched him in the face.

Magistrate Dennis Kinsella took a considerable amount of time to weigh up the various different factors that would affect sentencing.

He noted Allen had a significant criminal history and was the instigator of the confrontation, having called Lord for a lift from a nearby hotel.

But he also noted Lord had been the one to escalate the situation and first employ violence, though he accepted it was largely out of character for the mother of three.

Both defendants also appeared genuinely remorseful and had handed themselves in to the police station the next day.

Mr Kinsella sentenced Allen to 15 months in prison for the burglary offence, as well as four months for breaching the domestic violence order and two months for possessing cannabis, all to be served concurrently.

Because of the seriousness of the domestic violence offending, he set a parole release date of November 11, meaning Allen will spend the next four months behind bars.

Lord received a 12-month sentence with an immediate parole release date.

Both defendants were also ordered to pay $684.50 each in restitution for the doors.

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