THIEF Matthew Jukes tried to rob a shop at knifepoint after an earlier confrontation when he threatened to come back and ‘do a proper job’.
The 30-year-old from Boughey Road, Shelton, visited the Co-operative in High Street, Tean, twice on November 22.
He collected a variety of items at around 8pm and was asked to pay for them by a member of staff.
Jukes replied: “You think I’m robbing your shop? If I wanted to rob it I would come back and do it properly. I wouldn’t take a few things, I would take the lot.”
And later that evening he returned with a knife and demanded the shop assistant hand over cash from the till.
Jukes, appearing at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court, was sentenced to 27 months in prison for attempted robbery and possession of a bladed item.
Paul Spratt, prosecuting, said Jukes returned to the shop at around 9pm.
He added: “He was armed with a knife. He pointed the knife and indicated to the shop assistant to put the money in the bag.
“The shop assistant told the defendant he wouldn’t comply with the request.
“The defendant is still holding the knife and making his demand, but then leaves the shop.
“Police are called and the defendant is arrested and the knife is discovered. He maintains he carried it on the day in question for protection.”
Arif Hussain, mitigating, said he had tried to rob the shop while under pressure to pay his debts.
He said: “Because of substance abuse he’s accumulated debts and was under a degree of pressure to go and commit this offence. I do not put this forward as an excuse, but as background to explain his committing this offence.”
Mr Hussain added that Jukes has a history of drug abuse and mental health problems.
He said: “Substance and alcohol abuse led to offending in his life.
“He has mental health issues and has been admitted to Harpfields on several occasions.
“There’s CCTV footage of this and he doesn’t point the knife, it’s in his sleeve and he puts in on the counter.
“He asks for the money, he repeats the demand but he is told he is not going to get it and he leaves the shop.
“It is not well planned and not the best of attempts, as soon as he is confronted, he leaves. He is arrested nearby and exercises his right to silence in interview.”
Judge Paul Glenn said: “You made threats and you fulfilled that threat.
“You were on CCTV holding a knife to enforce your demand.
“The assistant, although shocked, refused your request and you left empty handed.”
Jukes’s sentence was reduced by a quarter for submitting an early guilty plea.