Mark Evans, 38, of Frederick Gardens, Croydon, was sentenced at Guildford Crown Court after pleading guilty to all charges. He will serve a custodial term of three years and four months, with an extended licence period of three years to follow.
Officers were called to Redhill Food and Wine in Horley at 8.55pm on Sunday 6 December, following a report of robbery in progress at the store. Evans had had entered the shop and approached the counter, where he picked up a glass bottle of beer and waved it at the shop worker, demanding repeatedly that he “Empty the till.”
A member of the public, who happened to be in the shop at the same time, intervened and defended the shop worker. In response, Evans smashed the bottle of beer on the side of the counter, threatening the member of the public with the jagged instrument. They were involved in a short physical altercation before the suspect fled the store and the shop worker called police.
Officers conducted a search of the area and found Evans nearby in Tolgate Avenue. He matched the description of the suspect and he also had injuries to his hand consistent with broken glass. He was subsequently charged with attempted robbery, affray and possession of an offensive weapon.
Evans had only just been released on license from prison three weeks prior to this offence, following a conviction for robbery in almost identical circumstances in 2016 that even took place in a shop on the same road. Following his arrest, Evans was recalled to prison.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Steven Cassidy, said: “The sentence reflects the seriousness of these offences, and shows that this type of violent and threatening behaviour will not be tolerated in our local communities.”
“I’d like to thank the victims for their bravery for their actions in challenging and preventing Evans from succeeding with the robbery and the quick contact with police.”
“With Evans coming out of prison and committing a carbon copy of his original offence so promptly, putting more victims through trauma, the sentence shows that this behaviour is unacceptable. Clearly Evans did not learn his lesson the first time. This sentence will give him some more time to think and learn.”