A man accused of firing a shortened 12-gauge shotgun into a car full of people at Cessnock on Christmas Day will face a trial in Newcastle District Court.
Christopher James McLoughney, 29, of Wollombi Road, Bellbird, appeared in Newcastle Local Court via audio visual link from Cessnock Correctional Centre where he pleaded not guilty to firing a firearm in a manner likely to injure, possession of an unregistered firearm in a public place and discharging a firearm with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
The four alleged victims, who were sitting inside a car outside a unit on Mount View Road at Cessnock, say they saw a muzzle flash, heard a loud bang, someone shouted “gun” and then the windscreen smashed.
The police say the man, who seconds earlier had appeared at the front door dressed in black, was Mr McLoughney, known as “Glocky” to those in Cessnock.
According to one of the alleged victim’s statements, he had fallen asleep on the couch of the unit on Christmas Eve and woken up at 3.40pm on Christmas Day to find his iPhone missing and $300 gone from his wallet.
He told police he saw Mr McLoughney inside the home, but he quickly left and got into a car.
The alleged victim spent the rest of the day trying to track down his phone before returning to the unit about 9.50pm.
The driver beeped the horn and the alleged victim called out to a woman inside “I know Glocky took my phone, I just want to know where it is. “The phone is sentimental to me.”
The woman said they didn’t have his phone and told him to leave before a man appeared in the doorway brandishing a shortened shotgun. The witnesses say he lifted the gun and pointed it at the front of the car before they saw a bright flash and a loud bang.
“I thought for sure one of us would have taken a hit,” the alleged victim said. “After looking at the damage to [the driver’s] windscreen, I am surprised she did not get injured at all.”