Longton crook jailed for drunken Hanley robbery attempt
PERSISTENT criminal Samuel Giblin has been jailed for two-and-a-half years after he tried to rob a shopkeeper when he was drunk.
Giblin had been drinking 'solidly' for three days in the run-up to the crime at Metro News Store in Hanley.
He pulled a scarf up so only his eyes could be seen before raising a metal bar and demanding cash, Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court heard yesterday.
Prosecutor Fiona Cortese said the two owners of the shop in Stafford Street had noticed Giblin outside the store before the attempted robbery.
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She said: "Vince Joy was standing in the front doorway when he saw the defendant hanging around by the shop door.
"He had his scarf pulled up so only his eyes could be seen.
"The defendant asked Mr Joy why he was looking at him and then moved away from the doorway.
"He returned holding a metal bar. He raised that and demanded money from co-owner Jobi Jose. His face was still covered by the scarf. Mr Jose telephoned the police.Both men believed the incident did not become any worse because there were two of them in the store."
The attempted robbery happened at around 8pm on November 18.
Giblin was tracked on CCTV walking around Hanley and was arrested in Hope Street.
Miss Cortese said the offender was very drunk.
She added that in custody he admitted threatening the shopkeeper with the metal bar.
But Giblin later denied making that admission.
He said he had gone to the doorway with the metal bar but could not recall asking for money.
The offender said he had drunk two-and-a-half litres of cider.
But Giblin, aged 22, of Belgrave Road, Longton, who has 70 previous offences on his record, pleaded guilty to attempting to rob Mr Jose.
Rachel Thompson, mitigating, said the offence was short-lived and added that Giblin did not enter the store.
"At the most he waved a bar around a little bit and staggered off," said Miss Thompson.
"He was intoxicated. He had been drinking solidly for about three days. He was homeless and cold and had not been sleeping, which goes some way to explain the state he was in."
Judge Paul Glenn agreed that it was a short-lived incident, nothing was taken and no-one was injured.
But he told Giblin the crime was serious and jailed him for 30 months.
"You have been a persistent offender since the age of 12 and have many offences for violence and dishonesty," said Judge Glenn.
"This was plainly pre-planned. We can see you on CCTV trying your best to cover your face up with a scarf.
"You went to the shop and demanded money with a metal bar.
"You gave up but it must have been a frightening experience for the shopkeeper, particularly when you were drunk and totally unpredictable."