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A 29-year-old man has been jailed for more than four years after carrying out an armed robbery at a convenience store in Ellesmere Port.
Kaya Colakoglu went into the shop on Westminster Road at around 8.30pm on Saturday 2 January carrying a large knife.
He went straight behind the counter and demanded that an employee, who was serving a customer, open the till.
After pointing the knife towards the store worker and threatening to stab him, Colakoglu opened the till himself.
He then stole the cash that was inside it and fled on foot.
Colakoglu was wearing a surgical face mask during the armed robbery, but he took it off before buying a bottle of rum and a soft drink at a convenience store on the nearby Stanley Road soon afterwards.
Detectives investigating the robbery released CCTV images of the unmasked Colakoglu and information provided by members of the public subsequently led to him being swiftly identified as the offender.
He was arrested at his home in Lime Street, Ellesmere Port, just 17-and-a-half hours after committing the knifepoint robbery.
Colakoglu immediately admitted to being the armed robber, stating that he was ‘mortified’ by what he had done.
He was subsequently charged with robbery and possession of a knife in a public place.
Colakoglu pleaded guilty to both offences and was sentenced at Chester Crown Court on Monday 1 February.
He was jailed for 40 months and ordered to pay a £190 victim surcharge.
The offending also triggered a 10-month suspended prison sentence imposed on Colakoglu by Mold Crown Court on Wednesday 12 August.
That sentence was for assault, affray, criminal damage and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place offences that Colakoglu committed in Rhyl, North Wales, earlier in 2020.
As such, the total sentence Colakoglu now has to serve is 50 months in prison.
Detective Constable Steve Popplestone, who led the investigation into the robbery at Ellesmere Port Local Policing Unit, said: “The man who was working behind the counter at the convenience store on Westminster Road was subjected to a terrifying ordeal that understandably left him extremely shaken up.
“The incident was also frightening for the man who was being served by the store worker at the time of the armed robbery.
“Thankfully – through CCTV footage, an appeal we issued to the local media and information that was subsequently provided by members of the public – we were able to quickly establish that Kaya Colakoglu was responsible for the robbery and arrest him.
“I hope the fact that he is now behind bars facing the consequences of his actions brings some closure to the store worker he threatened at knifepoint.
“I also hope that this case acts as a deterrent to other people and stops them from committing such crimes.”
Chief Inspector Sarah Heath, Cheshire Constabulary’s knife crime lead, added: “We are committed to doing all we can to tackle knife crime.
“We will respond robustly to any knife related incidents and do all we can to ensure that anyone found to be carrying a knife or committing a knife related offence is brought to justice.
“Members of the public have a vital role to play in our fight against knife crime by giving us information about crimes involving knives and those who carry weapons.
“I would like to thank the members of the public who helped us to identify the offender and bring him to justice.”
David Keane, police and crime commissioner for Cheshire, said: “I would like to thank everyone at Cheshire Constabulary that has been involved in this investigation.
“As a result of their sterling work, and the information provided by members of the public, the armed robber was identified, arrested and confessed to the crime within a day of the offence having occurred.”