Man jailed for Mowbray taxi robbery

A man has been jailed for robbing a taxi driver at knife-point in Mowbray.

Jayden Kent, 21, will spend at least seven months behind bars after pleading guilty to aggravated armed robbery. He was sentenced in the Launceston Supreme Court on Tuesday. Kent and a co-accused youth, who has already been sentenced, called for a taxi about 11pm on September 6 last year.

The youth used a fake name when ordering the cab. When the driver arrived, Kent told him they’d lost a mobile phone and asked for help looking for it.

The taxi driver drove further into the car park. Either Kent or the youth produced a carving knife, stood over the driver, pointed the knife at him and repeatedly demanded money, Justice Robert Pearce said in sentencing.

“The driver did not comply. He sat and did not respond. Eventually the offenders gave up and left on foot, taking the driver’s mobile phone,” Justice Pearce said.

The driver notified the taxi radio room and police were called, with both offenders arrested quickly. Kent admitted to much of what he had done when interviewed, the court heard.

“Aggravated armed robbery is a serious crime,” Justice Pearce said. “Taxi drivers are in an extremely vulnerable position and are entitled to the protection of the law. This was not a spur of the moment or impulsive act. The robbery was planned. The taxi was called for that purpose and the driver was lured into a trap.”

Kent was sentenced to two years prison, with 10 months of that suspended, and a non-parole period of seven months.