Heritage Bank in Lowe St, Nambour, where the man is alleged to have attempted an armed robbery.
Heritage Bank in Lowe St, Nambour, where the man is alleged to have attempted an armed robbery. Che Chapman

'No no, this is a joke': Accused Coast bank robber's bad excuse

A MAN accused of attempting to rob a Nambour bank has told a court it was a joke.

Jozef Kent Atkinson, 37, appeared in custody in Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Thursday charged with attempted robbery and possessing a knife in a public place.

The incident allegedly occurred at Heritage Bank in Lowe St about 12.50pm on Wednesday.

A police objection-to-bail affidavit said a bank employee was counting cash at one of the teller windows when Atkinson allegedly approached.

Police said another nearby employee called out to Atkinson to come to her window.

The objection to bail alleged Atkinson leaned through a gap in a Perspex screen and told the employee to "give me all your money".

It said the employee stalled for a second, not knowing what to do, before starting to gather money from her till.

Police allege Atkinson's demeanour changed at that point before he said "no no this is a joke" and then "no no you thought I was real".

"The defendant further stated 'I could get into a lot of trouble for this, do you know I could go to jail for a long time'," the affidavit read.

Police said Atkinson said "sorry darl, sorry" before turning and exiting the bank.

They said the teller was visibly upset and crying when they arrived.

The court heard police arrested Atkinson at the intersection of Howard and Ann Sts about 1.10pm.

Officers alleged he had a folding knife with the blade fully extended in the back pocket of his pants when they searched him.

They said he kept repeating "it was a joke".

Duty lawyer Andrew Berneville-Claye said when applying for Atkinson's bail on Thursday his client indicated it was all a joke.

However, Mr Berneville-Claye said he had told Atkinson the victim was scared and alarmed.

"If that was a joke you had better get a new one," Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist said.

"It's a serious offence."

He refused the Tinbeerwah man's application for bail.

Atkinson's matters are next due for mention on September 15.


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