Finley Hughes also punched two teenagers in a separate incident after waving a knife at them and threatening to “gut them like a fish”.
Hughes, 22, of Canon Street, Shrewsbury, who had fallen into a spiral of depression and drugs after losing his partner, his job and his ability to play sport after a rugby accident, pleaded guilty to robbery, two counts of making threats with a blade and two of assault by beating.
At Shrewsbury Crown Court yesterday Judge Peter Barrie jailed him for a total of 32 months - 18 months for robbery and 14 months for the other offences. He told him he had terrified his victims.
Miss Fiona Cortese, prosecuting, said that on May 30, Hughes had been riding his bike in the Castle Walk park, Shrewsbury, when he shouted to two teenagers, asking them what they were looking at.
He got off the bike and walked over to the 16 and 17-year-olds.
“He took a multitool out and extended the knife tool threatening to ‘gut them like a fish’,” Miss Cortese said.
He threatened to stab the 17-year-old before punching him twice in the face then punched the 16-year-old.
On October 14, Hughes went into the Esso petrol station in Harlescott late at night with his hood up and a scarf around his face.
He told the woman cashier to get money out of the till and when she didn’t, thinking it was someone playing a joke, he made it look like he had a weapon and told her not to force him to use it. The cashier handed over £80, Miss Cortese said.
When Hughes was arrested a short time later he had bought a cap to disguise himself.
Mr Stephen Scully, for Hughes, said his client had never been in trouble until last year when his life was turned upside down.
His relationship ended and he broke his ankle playing rugby ending his involvement in sport and resulting in him losing his job.
“He spiralled into depression, was self-medicating and was using cocaine,” Mr Scully said.
“He went off the rails and hit rock bottom, making an attempt on his own life. He had large drug debts and committed the robbery to get some money.”
Mr Scully said that on the day of the assaults, Hughes had been returning possessions to his ex-partner. He had tears in his eyes and thought the teenagers were laughing at him.
During his time on remand in prison Hughes had kicked his drugs habit and wanted to rebuild his life, he added.
The judge said Hughes had terrified the boys and the petrol station cashier.