Jail for drunken robber who demanded shop takings

Attempted robbery: McColl's in Murray Street, Hartlepool
Attempted robbery: McColl's in Murray Street, Hartlepool

A CONVICTED robber who staggered drunk into an off-licence and demanded the takings has been jailed.

Adrian Pearson, 43, was unsteady on his feet, smelled of alcohol and appeared to be very drunk when he tried to rob a McColl’s convenience store at 9.40pm when the assistants were getting ready to close.

Emma Daurge, who was behind the cigarette counter, asked him what he wanted, and he said: “I want the money out of the till.”

Jenny Haigh, prosecuting, told Teesside Crown Court about the exchanges between the two at the shop in Murray Street, Hartlepool, on May 24.

She said: “Ms Daurge told him that there was no money in the till and that it had been taken out, and he kept repeating three or four times ‘I want money’, slurring as he said it.

“She said that there was no money, and he said ‘like I’m trying to rob you’, and she said ‘you’re getting nothing’, and, ‘I’m phoning the police’.”

But then it turned menacing, with Ms Haigh adding: “As he shuffled towards the door, he turned his head and he said ‘well I’m coming back for you tonight’.

“He had his hand in his left trouser pocket and she believed he might take something out. She said that she was shaking with fear.

“She had already been in court that week for a previous incident in which she was threatened with a bottle when the store was robbed.

“She said that she was put into a taxi by her colleague because she was frightened to walk home.”

Pearson had been convicted of three robberies in 2005, and he was in breach of supervision for harassment and a conditional discharge for being drunk and disorderly.

Jim Withyman, defending, said Pearson had been so drunk that he remembered nothing until he was shown the store’s CCTV of the incident.

He added: “He hopes that the time he will spend in custody will assist in avoiding alcohol misuse.”

The judge Mrs Justice Simler told Pearson: “This was an extremely unpleasant offence as you must recognise.

“Although there was no physical injury, the threat of violence that you made to this young assistant terrified her.”

Pearson, of Baden Street, Hartlepool, was jailed for 18 months and he was given a five-year restraining order banning him from Murray Street and the store after he pleaded guilty to attempted robbery.