A masked man who was allegedly armed with an axe when he attempted to rob two Ballarat milk bars has been refused bail.
Konrad Szalontai, 26, appeared before the Ballarat Magistrates Court on Monday charged with a number of offences including armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, and possessing a prohibited weapon.
Police informant Detective Senior Constable Brett Duncan told the court Szalontai allegedly entered the Joseph Street milk bar wearing a silver mask and armed with a tomahawk on Sunday afternoon.
He allegedly demanded money from the shop’s owner before he was chased out.
Ten minutes later the accused allegedly threatened a second milk bar worker, less than two kilometres way in Kline Street. It is alleged Szalontai banged the axe on the till before the shop attended jumped the counter and ran from the store.
Szalontai allegedly filled a bag with 10-12 packets of smokes before rummaging through an attached house and getting into a car waiting outside.
Just over an hour later the accused entered an Elaine property armed with a samurai sword. He allegedly used the sword to break into cupboards before threatening the owner.
Szalontai was located at 5.20pm in Meredith with the mask and smokes inside the car.
Szalontai told police he was on a four-day ice bender and had not slept for days.
Opposing bail, police said they believed Szalontai was a risk to the community and possible flight risk.
Szalontai’s lawyer, Manny Brennan, said his client had stronger family supports than many.
In addition, Mr Brennan said his client, who was placed on a community corrections order 12 days ago, now had access to drug treatment which reduced the risk and did show cause as to why he should not be kept in custody.
“He would still have a burning hunger for (ice), I’m not willing to risk it,” magistrate Frank Jones said.
“I have to think of the community.”
Szalontai was remanded to reappear in court on December 1.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.