A MAN who had his thumb shot off during a chaotic home invasion at Waratah West says the gruesome injury is a "daily reminder" not to return to his former life of ice and crime. Terry Egan, 26, gave evidence during a sentence hearing in Newcastle District Court on Tuesday, showing Judge Justin Smith, SC, his injured right hand and claiming it's an "incentive" to keep on the straight and narrow.
As well as Egan, Matthew Moore, David Jones and Matthew Primmer have pleaded guilty to the bungled drug rip home invasion in June, 2018.
The four men jumped out of a car in Allowah Street about 10.20pm on June 13, kicked down the door of a home and Moore opened fire. But what the four men hadn't contemplated was that those inside, drug dealer Brandon Ryan Jennings and his brother-in-law Christopher Damien Stokes, knew they were coming.
When Moore fired a .22 rifle through the open doorway, the bullet passing through the laundry and lodging in the back door, Stokes fired back with a 12 gauge double barrel shotgun, striking Egan in the shoulder and right hand.
The four intruders then fled, dropping the .22 rifle in the front yard of the home and jumped back into the car.
But Stokes gave chase, firing another blast from the shotgun and smashing the back window of their Holden Commodore with a steel pole.
Four minutes later, Egan presented at the emergency department of the Calvary Mater Hospital with a gunshot wound to his right hand.
Egan's solicitor, Adrian Kiely, said the serious hand injury amounted to extra-curial punishment, a serious loss or detriment as a result of committing an offence.
But a prosecutor said Egan knew Moore was armed with a gun and it was simply a case of "playing with fire and getting injured".
Egan also sought to explain comments he made after his arrest, when he made a phone call about Jennings and said "he needs to get got and put in the boneyard". Egan said on Tuesday that the "boneyard" referred to protective custody in jail.
As well as being the "principle offender" in the home invasion shooting, Moore has pleaded guilty to three armed robberies, two at banks in 2018 and an until recently unsolved hold-up at a bottle shop in 2016.
The court heard Moore, who has a long criminal record and a history of committing armed robberies, told a psychologist he thought armed robberies were "victimless crimes".
That revelation came after the court heard an emotional victim impact statement from a Maitland Mutual employee who Moore held up in January, 2018.
The four men will be sentenced on Thursday.
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