A WALK through Robertson Park in October 2012 changed the lives of two young men and in both cases it was for the worse.
On October 29, a young man put on his new Nike sneakers he was bought for his birthday and took a stroll through the park at 8.30 on a Monday morning.
He never knew he was about to be assaulted and the lives of his family threatened, all for a pair of Nike shoes.
Matthew Coffey, now 25, approached the man in the park and asked him if he did drugs.
The young man said he did not and attempted to walk away but Coffey would not let him and asked him, “Where did you get those shoes from?”
Coffey then demanded the man take off his shoes and asked him for cash.
Coffey then grabbed the man and pushed him up against a van.
“Give me the shoes, if you don’t give then to me I’ll knock you out,” he said.
“I’ll bash you.”
The young man was terrified and began to shake when a taxi pulled up with another man hanging out the window.
The other man yelled to Coffey to leave, but Coffey would not leave without the shoes.
Instead he headbutted the young man and once again demanded the shoes.
This time the man gave them to him.
Coffey gave the man his own shoes, but threatened him.
“If you tell anyone, the police or your family, I will find you,” he told the victim.
“I know where you live, I’ll bash you and I’ll find your family and I will get them involved.
“I’m not joking with you.”
Police facts said officers used the taxi service to find Coffey at a house in Oxley Place wearing the stolen shoes.
In Orange District Court, Judge Stephen Norrish sentenced him to two years and six months in jail with a non-parole period of 12 months.
He had previous convictions of aggravated break and enter, stalking, assault and traffic offences.
Coffey will be eligible for release on November 17.