Shotgun pointed at me, Black Hill Post Office postmaster tells court

UPDATE MAY 7 2015: Brett Cummins jailed.

TROY Cheeseman had recalled a shotgun being pointed at him during an armed robbery at the Black Hill Post Office last February, a court heard on Friday.

“It was a shotgun, sawn-off and it was pointed straight at me,” Mr Cheeseman said. 

The Black Hill Post Office postmaster gave evidence for the prosecution in Ballarat Magistrates Court during day two of the committal hearing for Brett Patrick Cummins, 41, and Ian Ralph Gilbee, 52. 

Both Cummins and Gilbee have pleaded not guilty to a string of charges, including armed robbery and theft of a motor vehicle.

Cummins also pleaded not guilty to trafficking heroin and being a prohibited person possessing a firearm. 

Charge sheets allege Cummins and Gilbee stole $2800 in cash and two packets of cigarettes from the Black Hill Post Office on February 26 last year.

Mr Cheeseman told police on February 27 last year he recalled the gun to be a sawn-off 4.10 shotgun. 

“It is the type of gun that is used for rabbits,” he said.

Another prosecution witness, Daniel Downes, told the court he had spoken to Cummins about a robbery in early 2013. 

Mr Downes said he had spoken to Cummins after they began travelling to Melbourne to source and use heroin. 

He told the court he had asked Cummins about armed robberies because he heard “he had done a few”.

Some prosecution witnesses were also questioned about an armed robbery at Haintz Pharmacy in March 2010. 

Charge sheets allege Cummins had a knife with him and stole prescription medications containing drugs of dependence and $875 from Haintz Pharmacy on March 23, 2010.

Witness Ronald Marshall said he had noticed two men squatting and leaning against a wall, metres from Haintz Pharmacy. 

Mr Marshall told the court the man wearing a dark blue tracksuit had a knife with him when he entered the pharmacy. 

“He said: ‘This is a hold-up, I have a knife. Get down’,” Mr Marshall said. 

“He seemed more agitated near the end of the robbery. He said he wanted to cut someone.” 

Mr Marshall said he could not recall whether the man in the blue tracksuit had a gun with him, when asked by Cummins’ defence barrister, Simon Kenny. 

Magistrate Michelle Hodgson adjourned the case for a directions hearing in Ballarat County Court on May 22.