A man has been jailed for aiming a loaded gun at police pursuing him in a wild and dangerous car chase.Source:News Regional Media
A father-of-three demanded cash from a woman on the threat of implicating her son for supplying him a gun, following the man’s arrest for aiming a loaded rifle at police in a dangerous pursuit, a court has been told.
Bystanders and innocent drivers alike had to swerve and jump out of the way to avoid Toby Michael Silvia as he sped across Queensland roads, desperately trying to flee from police in a chase last year.
Even on remand his offending escalated, as he attempted to extort a woman from within the walls of prison.
Silvia, 31, sat quietly on the video link to Brisbane District Court on Wednesday as he learned his fate after 15 months on remand.
He had pleaded guilty earlier this year to a raft of offences including extortion, seriously assaulting police and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.
The court was told Silvia (pictured in 2018) aimed a loaded rifle through the window of his car, directly at police pursuing him in May last year.Source:News Regional Media
The court was told a LandCruiser was stolen from a Morayfield address on May 1 last year.
Silvia was seen at a service station two days later filling up the car, now spray-painted pink and having no number plates.
The same car was found by police at an address in Caboolture on May 6, this time sprayed white.
Silvia fled from police and embarked on a lengthy and dangerous 20-minute car chase through Caboolture after 9.20am.
Crown prosecutor Erin Kelly said Silvia was disqualified from driving but still sped 40km/h over the limit, at times narrowly avoiding heavy machinery in the area and swerving onto the wrong side of the road.
Road workers and vehicles alike had to take evasive action in order to avoid being hit.
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During the chase Silvia pointed a loaded sawn-off rifle through his window and the roof of the LandCruiser directly at pursuing police.
Ms Kelly said following his arrest, Silvia wrote a letter to a woman from prison, threatening to implicate her son in the supply of the gun.
He demanded two payments of $500 for him to “keep quiet”.
Even while on remand for the offences, Silvia attempted to extort an associate on the threat of implicating her son in the supply of the weapon to him.Source:News Regional Media
Silvia was identified through fingerprints left on the letter.
Ms Kelly said he had shown a “complete disregard” for authority and the safety of police.
Judge Anthony Rafter sentenced Silvia to five-and-a-half years’ jail but ordered him to serve an additional 12 months for the extortion offence.
He was also ordered to serve the balance of a suspended sentence imposed for other matters; 462 days spent in pre-sentence custody was declared as time served.
Silvia will be eligible for parole in November next year.
Defence barrister Nicholas Brown said his client had a strong employment history since high school, including recent work as a dig operator.
The court was told the same role would be available to him on release.
Mr Brown said Silvia had been productive in prison by undertaking logistics courses and working at the wood mill and as a unit cleaner.
“The medication (Silvia) is on is of great assistance to his mental health … (and) he’s been able to see a psychologist,” he said.Internet Explorer Channel Network