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Teen goes for a gun after being asked to leave home

by
August 05, 2017

An Echuca man accused of committing a crime spree across five towns will stay behind bars for another three weeks.

A STANHOPE teenager threatened his parents with a gun after they asked him to move out of home.

Andrew Symes, 19, faced Echuca Magistrates Court on Tuesday and pleaded guilty to unlawful assault, criminal damage, breaching an intervention order and unrelated driving matters.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Dave Rennie said Symes was living with his parents on a rural property south of Stanhope on February 1 when the incident took place.

‘‘His mum and dad attempted to speak with him regarding him moving out,’’ Snr Constable Rennie said.

‘‘They said they were willing to support him financially and emotionally.’’

But Symes became enraged and abusive, threatening to shoot anyone who tried to remove him from the property.

After his father said Symes would be too scared to use a firearm, the teen ran to a gun safe and forced it open with bolt cutters.

He returned moments later with a single-barrel shotgun and placed it on a table before walking back inside the house.

His mother locked herself in a bedroom and called police, while his father took the gun to Stanhope police station.

Police arrived soon after and questioned Symes, who said he was provoked and took the gun ‘‘to prove a point’’.

‘‘I checked it was unloaded and did it safely,’’ he told officers.

At the time, an intervention order prohibited Symes from contacting his mother.

The La Trobe University student also pleaded guilty to driving while suspended in Kyabram on April 13.

In court, a tearful Symes said he regretted his actions.

‘‘I stuffed up. I did the wrong thing,’’ he said.

‘‘Since then I’ve gone to seek medical help.’’

Magistrate Bruce Cottrill deferred sentencing to November 14 to allow for Symes to continue attending medical appointments.

‘‘I will require a letter from your medical practitioner or counsellor confirming the number of appointments and your progress,’’ Mr Cottrill said.

‘‘Subject to that, I will decide what to do with these charges.’’

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