Robber jailed after twice targeting Warrington store he was banned from
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A man from Warrington who committed a robbery and other theft related offences at a shop he was prohibited from entering has been jailed.
James Telfer, of Northway in Orford, had previously committed theft and assault offences at the discount food retailer in School Brow in Warrington town centre, in 2020.
As such, the 37-year-old was banned from entering the shop.
Yet he targeted the store again twice in eight days in 2021.
The incidents occurred shortly after 7.30pm on Tuesday 13 April and at around 4.30pm on Wednesday 21 April.
The first saw Telfer pull out a Stanley knife and threaten to stab a man working at the shop.
He later lunged at the man whilst he had the knife in his hand, though Telfer did not connect with the victim.
The victim had suspected Telfer of shoplifting and had confronted him inside the store.
He did so again in the second incident on Wednesday 21 April, though on that occasion he confronted him outside the shop after Telfer had stolen meat.
The victim was initially unaware that the shoplifter was the same man who had threatened him at knifepoint the previous week.
When they both realised who each other were, Telfer took something out of his pocket and told the victim: “This time I will stab you.”
The victim soon realised that Telfer was merely holding a twig.
Telfer subsequently hit the victim in the head three times, causing minor injuries, before fleeing with stolen meat.
The police were called and officers, aided by town centre CCTV operators, located and arrested Telfer within minutes in nearby Brick Street.
He was taken to Warrington General Hospital before going to custody.
Whilst at the hospital he was arrested for a public order offence after throwing a cup of coffee on the floor and continually shouting and swearing in front of medical staff and members of the public.
When questioned in custody, Telfer denied committing the offences at the town centre shop.
However, the incidents were captured on CCTV.
Telfer was charged with several offences.
He pleaded guilty to robbery in connection with the incident that occurred on Tuesday 13 April and theft, assault and a public order offence in relating to his actions on Wednesday 21 April.
Telfer was sentenced to 54 months imprisonment at Liverpool Crown Court on Monday 14 June.
Detective Constable Darren Burns, of Warrington Local Policing Unit, said: “James Telfer continued to target the frozen food shop even when he was prohibited from going there under the terms of his licence after being released from prison just weeks before he committed the latest offences.
“His offending there escalated to a robbery in which he threatened a shop worker at knifepoint.
“Just eight days later, Telfer committed further offences there, including assaulted the same victim.
“The ordeals the victim was subjected to understandably left him extremely shaken up.
“The second incident also left him with minor facial injuries.
“I hope the fact that Telfer has been convicted of these offences and is now behind bars facing the consequences of his action, gives the victim some closure and enables him to move forward with his life.
“I also hope the sentence that Telfer has been handed by Liverpool Crown Court deters others from committing similar offences.”
Chief Inspector Sarah Heath, Cheshire Constabulary’s knife crime lead, added: “We are committed to doing everything we can to tackle knife crime.
“As this case shows, 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.
“To report any type of crime involving weapons, call us on 101, or 999 in an emergency.”
Information can also be given to Cheshire Constabulary online via the Cheshire Police website.
Anyone who knows someone that carries a knife can report it to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via the Crimestoppers website.