Men front court over alleged gel blaster drive-by shooting

 

A CAIRNS trio has appeared in court for the first time charged in relation to an alleged drive-by shooting with a gel blaster hitting a woman, a car and two cats.

Michael Josiah Clark, Lewis Cooper Ederveen and Shae Douglas James Spence are all facing one count each of animal cruelty, common assault and dangerous conduct with a weapon.

Police allege the men, all 20, drove down a small suburban cul-de-sac in Kanimbla in September when they used the replica weapon, which was fitted with a scope, to shoot from a car window multiple times.

Cairns men Shae Douglas James Spence, Lewis Cooper Ederveen, Michael Josiah Clark appeared in Cairns Magistrates Court on Friday. Pictures: Facebook
Cairns men Shae Douglas James Spence, Lewis Cooper Ederveen, Michael Josiah Clark appeared in Cairns Magistrates Court on Friday. Pictures: Facebook


Police also said the men wore face coverings during the alleged brazen daylight attack about 4.30pm on September 26.

In court on Friday before magistrate Kevin Priestly, Mr Ederveen's defence solicitor, Derek Perkins, indicated his client would plead not guilty to all charges.

Lucy Maher, defence for Mr Spence, indicated her client would plead not guilty to the animal cruelty and common assault charges.

Mr Spence, who was supported by family in court, has not pleaded to the weapon charge.

Their matters are scheduled before the court again on December 12 with the briefs of evidence to be served by November 25.

Mr Clark has not indicated or entered a plea to his charges. His matter was adjourned to November 13.

All three men are on bail.

Following the incident, police seized a gel blaster with sight attached during a raid of a residence.

Cairns police Senior Sergeant James Coate previously said alleged victims would not be able to differentiate between a gel blaster and a real gun if the former was used this way.

"If you point one of these devices at anyone, you could end up on the receiving end of violence yourself from people believing they need to act in self defence," Sergeant Coate said.

The replica guns are banned in all states except Queensland and South Australia.

Recent changes to the Weapons Act in July means Queensland owners now need a "reasonable excuse" to carry them as police concerns grow about misuse.

The weapon charge carries a maximum sentence of four years' jail.

Originally published as Men front court over alleged gel blaster drive-by shooting



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