A man who soaked a car in petrol and then threatened to set it alight has been jailed for four years

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A man who soaked a car in petrol and then threatened to set it alight has been jailed for four years.

Kingsley Edmed, from Lakemead in Ashford, pulled up at a petrol station forecourt in Brookfield Road during the early hours of Saturday 24 August 2019.

He got out of his car and went inside the shop where he approached a man he knew and threatened him for money.

The incident, which took place at around 3.20am, continued on the forecourt when Edmed walked over to the car the man had arrived in and got into the back seat. There were four other people in the vehicle, which was still parked next to a fuel pump. Edmed told them they weren’t leaving until he got his money and then threatened to set the car on fire.

A few moments later 22-year-old Edmed got out of the vehicle and started pouring petrol through an open door, which soaked the back seats and the two people sitting in the back.

He continued to make threats about setting the car alight before the people sitting in the back got out. He then pulled out a ball and chain and smashed through the rear window.

At this point, the driver and the remaining passenger got out and Edmed jumped into the driver’s seat and left with the car.

Around ten minutes later a resident in Noakes Meadow heard a loud bang and the sound of car alarms. He ran out of his house where he saw a car screeching down the road, having just collided with several parked cars. This car was later identified as the same vehicle that Edmed had stolen.

On Sunday 25 August officers found the car burnt out in Great Chart.

Following a number of enquiries Edmed was arrested on Wednesday 25 September. He admitted to aggravated vehicle taking but denied charges of criminal damage, threats to cause criminal damage, possession of an offensive weapon, arson and having no insurance.

A jury found him not guilty of arson but he was convicted of the other offences and sentenced at Canterbury Crown Court on Thursday 5 March 2020.

Investigating officer, Detective Constable Samuel Minichiello said: ‘Edmed fully intended to scare his victims by causing damage to the vehicle they were in and threatening to set them alight. Fuelled by anger and aggression he then caused further damage by colliding with four other cars in a nearby road, putting innocent lives at risk.

‘Thankfully Edmed will now serve time in prison for his reckless actions.’