Ashlee Ida Pfennig and Wallaroo fugitive Jake Dohnt in court over two-day manhunt
- Accused Wallaroo gunman appears in court
A WOMAN accused of assisting alleged Wallaroo fugitive Jake Dohnt while a manhunt was underway told him to “go, go, go” when she realised police had spotted the pair, a court has heard.
Ashlee Ida Pfennig, 27, of Clearview allegedly approached police forward command post in Wallaroo while an area of the seaside town was in lockdown on Monday after Dohnt allegedly led police on a pursuit and brandished a imitation gun at police.
She appeared in the Adelaide Magistrates Court on Wednesday charged with two counts of assisting an offender and one count of breach of bail.
Police prosecutor sergeant Stuart Rees told the court Pfennig had approached police with Dohnt’s mother about 6.15pm Monday.
“(Pfennig) advised that she had spoken to Dohnt earlier that evening via mobile phone,” he said.
“Police are of the opinion that this defendant has assisted Dohnt in evading those cordons by picking him up in the Wallaroo area and then driving him to Adelaide.”
He said police spotted Pfennig standing next to a silver blue Holden Commodore they suspected Dohnt was driving about 2.40pm in Clearview.
“A police office overheard this defendant allegedly say ‘it’s the police. Go, go, go.’,” Sgt Rees said.
During the police interview which followed, he said Pfennig allegedly received several mobile phone calls from Dohnt and she attempted to delete the call record.
“She then started smashing her mobile phone on the corner of the table,” he said.
During her subsequent arrest, Sgt Rees said Pfennig allegedly told a police officer “I hope you get shot”, before saying something similar to two other officers.
He said her release on bail was opposed because of the seriousness of the charges, risk she would reoffend, belief she is incapable of complying with bail and a risk of interference with the investigation.
Magistrate Paul Bennett ordered bail inquiry and home detention bail reports and adjourned a decision on bail until next week.
“The ordering of reports, even if the home detention report is favourable, does not necessarily mean bail will be granted but I haven’t shut the door on bail,” he said.
Also on Wednesday, Dohnt, 25, appeared before Elizabeth Magistrate Yoong Fee Chin via videolink from the Port Pirie Magistrates Court.
Kylie-Ann Pligl, for Dohnt, said her client would not be making an application for bail before his case was adjourned until January 2019.
The police prosecutor sought a delay of 10 months — until May 2019 — because of a backlog at Forensic Science SA for DNA analysis, which currently has an 8-month wait.
He said it was a “complex matter” and involved Dohnt allegedly threatening a police officer by pointing an imitation handgun at him before that officer fired a single shot.
“A gun matching that description was found in a backyard … and needs to be forensically examined for the purposes of DNA,” he said.
He told the court the DNA analysis was “crucial with respect to some of the charges”.
“The ballistics report has a 4-month delay but that’s neither here nor there,” he said.
Magistrate Chin refused to adjourned the matter until May and instead delayed the case for six months.
Dohnt faces 15 charges, including endanger life, driving dangerously and threatening to kill, stemming from the two-day manhunt that took place in Wallaroo on Monday and Tuesday.
Documents filed with the court show Dohnt also faces four counts of assault and two counts of making threats to kill against a woman at Wallaroo and Moonta between June 25 and July 11.