Appeal dismissed: Violent offender to stay in jail

A man who tried to steal a car with a child trapped inside during a violent one-night crime spree has lost a bid to have his sentence reduced. 

Christopher Slater, 22 of Griffith NSW, was sentenced to five years and six months behind bars for his rampage through the streets of Canberra on October 9, 2010.

He committed 11 offences, some only minutes apart, after he and friends came to the ACT from NSW for the night.

One of his crimes involved stealing a car sitting in a driveway with a five-year-old in the back seat.

The mother ran out screaming and tried to grab the car door.

Slater got out and fled with her handbag, but left the car rolling, meaning the mother had to get inside and stop the vehicle.

Slater and two co-offenders started the night by smashing their way into the Oxley Court apartments in Griffith, ACT.

Slater was armed with a wooden-handled axe and was looking for things to steal.

Finding nothing, Slater confronted two men outside, and lunged at one with the axe.

The victims ran to their car, but Slater used the axe to smash the car's window.

They ran again to a nearby shop and Slater stole a wallet from the vehicle.

An hour later, Slater attacked another driver, jumping on a car bonnet and smashing its windscreen.

The driver and passenger were both assaulted, and the passenger had his neck and spine stomped on.

An hour later, Slater attacked a woman sitting in her car at Griffith shops.

When she beeped her horn to try and get attention, he said words to the effect of "bitch you are going to get it now".

He smashed her windscreen with a rock as she reversed in an attempt to escape. 

Acting Justice John Nield sentenced Slater for the crimes last June.

The earliest he could have been released was October next year.

But Slater appealed the sentence, arguing Justice Nield had made a series of mistakes in sentencing. 

The judge, Slater's lawyers argued, had failed to properly consider a previous sentence the offender had served in NSW, and his young age at the time of the Canberra crime spree. 

They also argued Justice Nield had erred in giving only a 10 per cent discount for Slater's pleas, and improperly gave weight to information that was not properly put before the court.

But the appeal was dismissed on all grounds by the ACT Court of Appeal on Monday morning. 

The judges - Justice Richard Refshauge, Justice Hilary Penfold and Justice John Burns - said even if an error was identified, the appeal would still have been dismissed.

"We would not in this case have found that another sentence was required and accordingly would still have dismissed the appeal," they wrote.

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