Terrifying axe attack over debt

AN AXE-WIELDING home invader who threatened to kill a woman inside her house over a dispute with her partner has been sent to prison.

Douglas Gordon Haaksma, 31, pleaded guilty in Ipswich District Court to burglary while armed and violence in company.

The court heard that on December 15 last year Haaksma, armed with an axe, and his partner went to the Riverview house of a man he'd had some dealings with.

Haaksma felt he had a grievance against the man and claimed he was owed money. When they got to the house they found the man was not home, however his female partner was.

She refused to let Haaksma or his partner in, causing him to yell, "Let me in or I'll axe in".

Haaksma told the woman, "I'm going to kill you; I'm going to kill you. Give me my money".

At one stage of the attack he swung the axe handle at the woman.

The court heard Haaksma, who had been drinking before the attack, was then calmed down by his partner before they fled with a television from the house.

Judge Sarah Bradley said while the dispute had since been resolved and the television returned, a victim impact statement from the woman showed the effect the attack had on her.

"This was a terrifying experience for her," she said.

"You invaded her house and seriously threatened her with an axe."

The court heard Haaksma had prior convictions for grievous bodily harm and assault occasioning bodily harm from 2006 for which he was sentenced to two years prison.

Haaksma also has a long-running substance abuse problem and had been using amphetamines since he was 11 years old.

The court heard he had been addicted to heroin for two years and "smoked as much marijuana as he could".

A psychological report tendered to the court said Haaksma suffered from anxiety and may have suffered from drug-induced psychosis in the past.

Dressed in a black Chevrolet Racing polo shirt, Haaksma sat nervously shaking in the dock yesterday as Judge Bradley read out his sentence.

His partner sitting at the rear of the court burst into tears as Judge Bradley said she would be putting him behind bars.

He was sentenced to two years prison with a parole release date in six months time. He will then be on parole for 18 months.

Topics:  burglary ipswich district court

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