Drug-fuelled Penticton home invasion nets 30-month jail term

Female ringleader pleads guilty for her role in Calgary Avenue heist that saw victims hit with an axe handle

Scales of justice

Scales of justice

Described as the ringleader behind a home invasion, a Penticton woman has been sentenced to 30 months behind bars.

Amanda Marie Sach, 24, submitted early guilty pleas and was convicted of robbery, assault with a weapon, assault causing bodily harm and unlawful confinement.

On the afternoon of Nov. 30, 2013, a group of people showed up at a home on Calgary Avenue with a detached garage that Crown counsel described as a “man cave.”

The accused were wearing hoods and bandanas. They demanded money from the home’s residents and ordered them to the ground.

Crown counsel Nashina Devji said RCMP suspected the incident was an attempt to get money and drugs.

Devji said Sach had mace and a knife on her when she entered the garage, where she punched one of the residents and hit the other with an axe handle.

The female victim was knocked unconscious and had her hands restrained with zap straps.

Crown counsel said the robbers left in a purple Honda with jewellery, a cash box containing $1,200, clothing and some electronics. Once they left, the female victim instructed her son, who was inside the house, to call 911 while she went over to a neighbour’s house who freed her from the zap straps.

When RCMP arrived the garage appeared “rifled through” with items smashed and strewn about.

Court heard the homeowners were reluctant to provide information to Mounties as they were fearful of what would happen if they co-operated, but eventually gave a statement. The male victim said Sach was giving the orders when the robbers entered his garage and she hit him with the handle end of an axe. The whole ordeal lasted just over an hour.

RCMP arrested Sach on Dec. 2 in Keremeos, where she admitted to Mounties she barely knew the Calgary Avenue residents whose home she robbed and was high on methamphetamine at the time.

Two men were also arrested and later released after Sach cleared them of any wrongdoing and said they were simply, “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

Some items stolen from the home, including an engagement ring, were later sold in Kelowna, and the rest of the items were thrown into a dumpster. Sach admitted things got out of control quickly and her plan was just to get money and drugs.

Crown counsel argued Sach should face a minimum of four years in prison because of her lengthy criminal record, the violence displayed during the robbery while the victims were restrained, and for her role as ringleader.

Defence counsel James Pennington said Sach was under some pressure from a individual who allegedly threatened her with a knife and sexually assaulted her.

Pennington said he expects charges will be laid against that person for those acts. He said his client had been doing well and working prior to the robbery, but the loss of a child in utero set her back into the drug culture. He asked for a jail sentence of between 30 and 36 months.

On top of the 30 months in prison Sach received, Judge Gail Sinclair ordered a lifetime firearms ban and a mandatory $800 victim surcharge.

“This is a very, very unfortunate situation for everybody involved,” said Sinclair.

Anthony Donavin Werden was also arrested in connection with this incident and is facing similar charges as Sach.

A third man, who cannot be identified because he has not made his first appearance in court, was also charged. Werden is scheduled to be in court Jan. 8 to fix a date for his next appearance.


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