Holyrood robberies earn Steven Friedrich 3-year sentence
The mother of a young man who was sentenced Wednesday for holding up the same Holyrood store twice last year says her son needs to pay for what he has done, and hopes he will get the help he needs in federal prison.
Steven Friedrich, 20, was given a three-year sentence at provincial court in St. John's Wednesday.
The robberies — which were caught on surveillance camera — happened at the Circle K Irving in September and October.
Friedrich was turned in to the RCMP when both his mother and grandmother recognized his mannerisms in security footage released by police.
"I was watching the news one night, and I saw him up there on the TV screen and I knew it was him right off the bat," said Susan Friedrich, Steven's mother.
"I kept watching it over and over again online, and I kept trying to convince myself that it wasn't him. But it was like a reassurance that it definitely was him."
Friedrich admits he swung the bat during the October robbery and hit an employee in the wrist after the clerk refused to give him cigarettes.
The swing also broke the store's debit machine.
Drugs took 'total control'
Following the sentencing hearing, Susan Friedrich told CBC News that her son got hooked on morphine and also suffers from bouts of depression.
"He [has] been very unhappy with his life. I guess he resorted to drugs to self-medicate himself to feel better and the drugs just took total control over him — and he ended up breaking the law."
It is Susan Friedrich's hope that her once friendly, soft-spoken son gets the help he needs while he serves his sentence.
"He can't do things like that to other people and traumatize other families like that. It's wrong," a teary-eyed Susan Friedrich said. "He has to serve his time and do his thing. It's not right."
Judge James Walsh accepted a joint submission from Crown and defence lawyers, who agreed that a three-year term was appropriate.
It's shorter than usual, but Walsh said Friedrich's guilty plea saved the need for a trial and meant witnesses didn't have to testify.