Jailed: Man robbed two Telford newsagents at knifepoint two days apart
A man described as a 'significant risk' to the public has been jailed for carrying out knifepoint robberies at two Telford newsagents within 48 hours.
Matthew Rogers has been locked up for four years and four months for the offences. At one of the stores a child saw what happened.
Staff at Martin's McColls, in Madeley, and at a store in Majestic Way, in Aqueduct, identified Matthew Rogers as the person responsible for demanding cash before fleeing with the loot.
The 26-year-old admitted two counts of robbery and two counts of possession of a bladed article relating to the incidents,which happened on April 11 and 13 this year.
Judge Peter Barrie told Rogers: "On two occasions in April you went to steal money and you armed yourself with a kitchen knife. You went to two different convenience stores two days apart.
"You used the threat of the knife to frighten the shopkeepers into handing over money that was in the till. Each of them was affected.
"I have read a full psychiatric report about you. It explains much about your personal difficulties. I accept everything that the psychiatrist has to say about you.
"But has Mr Edwards has acknowledged, whatever your background difficulties are, they do not take away your abilities to decide about your behaviour and cannot be an excuse for you to in act this way against other people.
"You have a long list of other offences but none as serious has this."
The judge said that the report stated that if Rogers, of Bembridge, Brookside, Telford, did not get his substance abuse under control and take his medication "then you do continue to pose a significant risk, risk of similar or escalating behaviour".
In mitigation, Mr Robert Edwards said Rogers was remorseful and had made efforts while in prison to address his mental health and drug addiction issues.
"My client has asked me to apologise to the victims who he understands must have been terrified," Mr Edwards said.
For the robberies Rogers was jailed for four years and four months to run concurrently. For possession of a knife he was jailed for 10 months on each count to run concurrently.
The sentence will be extended by a two-year licence period.
Prosecuting barrister Mr Gary Cook said Rogers entered Martin's McColl's, in Russell Road, Madeley, at 5,45am on April 11, and picked up a bottle of cider before approaching the "frightened" female duty manager who spotted the kitchen knife in his right hand.
"He said to her 'give me the money'. She opened the till and gave him £80. He also asked for cigarettes," Mr Cook said.
At the second store, in Majestic Way, the owner's son was present and £100 was handed over in that incident which happened at about 8pm on April 13.
Rogers was given credit for his guilty pleas. He must serve two-thirds of the prison term before being considered for parole.
There was no order for costs or compensation.
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