A woman involved in a fatal robbery over a decade ago has been jailed for driving her car at two pedestrians before crashing it into a garage in what one of her victims claimed was a case of “racial hatred”.
Rebecca Katherine Krutsky had fought two of the serious charges against her but was found guilty of them in an ACT Magistrates Court hearing that started earlier this year.
She had been driving near her home in Taylor on 8 September 2022 when two women started walking across the road after visiting a friend’s house.
Krutsky drove up to them and exchanged words, then with “without warning”, she drove her car at them while they were on the footpath, Magistrate Glenn Theakston told the court on Wednesday (22 February).
He said she would have hit them if they hadn’t immediately jumped out of the way and there was “a real potential for both women to be seriously injured or killed”.
The two women ran back to their friend’s house, but “almost inexplicably”, Krutsky reversed and drove towards where they were running, then smashed into the home’s garage, he said.
The crash, which the magistrate described as an “explosive intrusion”, wrote off a $65,000 BMW in the garage and caused about $30,000 in damage to the house.
Krutsky drove away and called police but suggested the women had been at her home and she had been chasing them away, which the magistrate said was “not at all reflected” in the closed-circuit television footage of the incident.
She was found guilty of two counts of using an offensive weapon in a way that was dangerous to a person but pleaded guilty to charges of damaging property and drug driving.
One of the owners of the house wrote a victim impact statement for the court, saying the incident had been “weird behaviour in a peaceful, beautiful country”, and she thought it was a “serious racial hatred case”.
But Krutsky’s lawyer, Madison Fieldus of Kamy Saeedi Law, said there was no evidence of her client’s motivations, so she asked Magistrate Theakston not to give any regard to the allegation it had been racially motivated in his sentencing.
Ms Fieldus said Krutsky had been in a heightened state that day due to various stressors. For instance, a large amount of money had gone missing from her bank account and she hadn’t slept for about 72 hours.
She said she had lived in an ACT Housing property in Taylor for several years before being taken into custody after this incident. She had been running a disability support business which she hoped to restart when released from jail.
While she had turned to drugs, including heroin, to cope with a trauma when she was younger, Ms Fieldus said drugs were no longer an issue for her client.
Magistrate Theakston convicted the 50-year-old and sentenced her to two-and-a-half years’ jail with a non-parole period of 11 months. He also made a $1500 repatriations order, fined her $1000 with no time to pay and disqualified her from driving for 18 months.
With her time backdated, she can be released from jail in August 2023.
In 2013, Krutsky was convicted and sentenced for aiding or abetting a robbery over an incident that led to the death of 26-year-old drug dealer Andre Le Dinh in Belconnen in May 2010.