Sandbach man jailed for armed robbery of a dog walker
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An 18-year-old man from Sandbach has been jailed after carrying out an armed robbery on a dog walker in the town.
Alfie Bould, of Fairfield Avenue, pleaded guilty to robbery and possession of a bladed article in a public place.
He was sentenced for the offences at Chester Crown Court on Monday 20 April. Appearing via a video link, Bould was handed a three-year custodial sentence to be served at a young offenders’ institute.
His victim, a 28-year-old from Sandbach, was walking his parents’ dog when the incident occurred at around 10.30pm on Thursday 6 February.
After walking past Bould, who was stood in the doorway of the Swan and Chequers pub in Hightown, the victim became aware that someone was following him along Congleton Road.
When he was by Sandbach Fire Station at The Commons, Bould demanded cash from the victim whilst holding a machete.
The victim initially attempted to run away.
He stopped running as Bould was chasing him whilst swinging the machete towards him and the victim realised the small dog would not be able to keep up with him.
At that point the victim gave Bould, who was acting erratically, his mobile phone and told the offender that he did not have any money on him, pulling out his pockets to prove it.
Bould then ran off with the phone.
The victim reported the robbery to the police and officers arrested Bould on Congleton Road shortly after 11.30pm.
He matched the description of the offender that the victim had supplied and attempted to run away as he was being arrested.
A subsequent search of the area led to the stolen phone being recovered from a nearby park.
The machete was found the following day in a garden near to where Bould was arrested.
Bould refused to answer any questions when he was interviewed in custody. However, extensive evidence was gathered against him – including CCTV footage showing the bulk of the incident – and Bould admitted being responsible for the robbery when he appeared at Chester Crown Court on Monday 9 March.
Please be aware some viewers may find this CCTV footage upsetting. Although no-one was hurt, and the victim has approved it's release, it does show the moment the incident took place.
Following sentencing, Detective Constable Scott Marshall-Bowater, who led the investigation into the robbery, said:
“The victim was subjected to a frightening ordeal as he walked his parents’ dog in Sandbach town centre.
“Alfie Bould demanded money from him whilst brandishing – and at one point swinging – a machete and acting erratically, but the victim had no cash on him.
“Thankfully, Bould accepted this and stole his mobile phone instead, and thanks to the strength of the description we were given by the victim we were able to locate and arrest the offender within an hour of the robbery having taken place.
“We were also able to recover the machete he used in the robbery and the phone he stole.
“I am delighted that Bould is now behind bars facing the consequences of his actions.
“He is only 18 years old and I hope he spends his time in custody regretting, and learning from, his actions and that he goes on to turn his life around.
“I also hope that this case deters others from carrying weapons and committing similar offences.”
On top of his custodial sentence, the Bould was ordered to pay a £181 victim surcharge.
Chief Inspector Sarah Heath, Cheshire Constabulary’s knife crime lead, said:
“We take knife crime extremely seriously at Cheshire Constabulary.
“When people carry knives it is only a matter of time before someone suffers life changing injuries or is killed, and the simple fact is if you carry a knife then you are much more likely to be involved in a knife crime.
“We have a structured prepare, protect, pursue and prevent approach to tackling knife crime that involves various partner agencies, including local authorities, education providers, health authorities, third sector organisations, youth representatives and community groups.
“We work together to educate young people about the dangers and futility of carrying weapons, steer them away from criminality and offer them attractive alternative ways to spend their time.
“Our aim is for weapon-free streets throughout the county and we will continue to endeavour – through education, awareness and action – to make Cheshire a county in which no-one carries a knife or feels that there is a reason to do so.
“However, the police cannot achieve this goal on our own. Knife crime is a societal problem that cannot be solved without the support of the whole society.
“If you have any information regarding knife crimes or those who carry weapons please let us know.”
To report any type of knife crime call Cheshire Constabulary on 101, or 999 in an emergency.