Gunpoint car-jackings: How wild crime spree ended in crash
A DANGEROUS robber, whose crime spree came to an end when he crashed in Maryborough, has been released on immediate parole.
Zachariah Kyron Ireland, 30, pleaded guilty in Maryborough District Court to a string of robberies and carjackings in which people were held at gunpoint while their vehicle was stolen.
The court heard during two armed carjackings, Ireland was the driver and a co-offender threatened people with a gun.
He was one of three people who broke into an IGA supermarket in Bundaberg.
A manhunt for Ireland followed his crime spree at Bundaberg where a ute was stolen.
Ireland crashed that ute into another vehicle at Maryborough and continued driving until the car stopped because of the damage caused by the collision.
He then ran until he was tasered by police, the court was told.
Since then, he had been involved in a prison riot at Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre on July 26 last year.
He had been sentenced to two years in prison for his actions during the riot, which included arming himself with a broom handle and using a sandwich press to smash a window.
During sentencing earlier this year, the court was told that no one was injured but the riot caused $70,000 worth of damage.
At the time, Ireland was given immediate parole for time already served.
The court heard Ireland had spent about two years in pre-sentence custody for these offences.
In his defence, the court was told Ireland had lived in Dubbo before moving to Bundaberg with his mother after his parents divorced.
He had owned his own concreting business for 10 years.
But after his partner died of a medical condition, his life went off the rails and he turned to drugs to cope with his loss.
Ireland was said to be "embarrassed" about being involved with the riot and his behaviour was "that of a man in the grips of an addiction with a dangerous drug".
Judge Orazio Rinaudo told Ireland if he was able to get the drugs out of his system and his life, he would be able to live a productive life.
He said he understood Ireland was not the primary perpetrator in the offending, but the offending was "quite serious".
Ireland was given a head sentence of two years in prison.
He was given an immediate parole release date because of the prison time he had already served.
Ireland was also given a three year suspended prison sentence, operational for four years.
He was ordered off the road for at least two years for a series of traffic offences, including a dangerous driving charge related to the crash in Maryborough.
A further six-month driving ban was handed down because he had been caught drug driving prior to the crime spree that landed him in custody.
Judge Rinaudo said it would be up to the Department of Transport to decide whether the licence disqualifications would be concurrent or cumulative.