Teenager with foot-long knife who attempted to rob Woodside News in Norwich, jailed for 44 months

Aaron Fisher was sentenced to 44 months in prison for attempted robbery and possession of a blade. Picture: NORFOLK CONSTABULARY Aaron Fisher was sentenced to 44 months in prison for attempted robbery and possession of a blade. Picture: NORFOLK CONSTABULARY

Friday, July 25, 2014
8:43 AM

A teenager who brandished a foot-long knife in an attempted robbery at a convenience store in Norwich has been jailed for 44 months.

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Aaron Fisher, 19, was wearing a balaclava with two eyeholes cut in it when he entered Woodside News in Salhouse Road at about 10pm on February 24, a court heard.

Pointing the knife at the shopkeeper and his adult daughter he demanded cash from the till.

But the plucky shopkeeper picked up a plastic bin to thwart the attack and Fisher left empty-handed.

Fisher, of no fixed address, also managed to cut his own leg with the knife as he left the store.

Fisher pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to attempted robbery and possession of a bladed article, and appeared for sentencing at Norwich Crown Court yesterday.

His co-defendant, Andrew Fraser, 26, from Music House Lane, Norwich, had pleaded guilty to assisting an offender at an earlier hearing. He was jailed for 10 months.

Ian James, prosecuting, said both men were at an address in Goodwood Close with several others before the attempted robbery.

He said the two men were talking about kidnapping someone, before they picked out the largest knife in a rack from the kitchen.

Fisher then went to the nearby shop to rob the business.

Mr James said: “Fisher went into the shop wearing a grey balaclava-type garment with two eyeholes cut in it.

“He approached the counter, raised his right hand which was holding the kitchen knife. It was about 1ft long. “Fisher said, ‘Open the till now’, and pointed the knife at the shopkeeper and his daughter. The shopkeeper picked up a plastic bin nearby to defend himself.

“He parried and fended off Fisher using the bin, thereby thwarting the act. Fisher left the shop.”

Mr James said that when Fisher had brandished the knife, the shopkeeper’s daughter had started screaming.

“The shopkeeper said he was very afraid of what was going on. His daughter was terrified,” Mr James added.

Afterwards, Fisher returned to the address in Goodwood Close, and said that he had been stabbed.

“In fending him off, the shopkeeper had managed to cause Fisher to stick the knife into his own leg,” Mr James said.

To provide a false account of what happened to police, Fraser got another knife from the kitchen and started rubbing blood from Fisher’s leg on to it. He told Fisher to tell police that he had fallen on the knife while cooking.

However, in interview, Fisher said he had been stabbed by a robber coming out of the convenience store. But the next day he admitted the offence. Mr James said CCTV footage of the incident from the shop showed the knife being “flourished in a menacing manner”.

Michael Clare, for Fisher, said he had been prescribed anti-depressant and anti-psychotic medication, and could have an anti-social personality disorder.

He said: “He’s clearly an immature young man, as per his behaviour in court. And he’s clearly had some mental health issues.”

For Fraser, Mr Clare said the incident had started with both men showing-off.

He said Fraser did not realise that Fisher was going to carry out the robbery, and sought to deter him.

He said Fraser’s girlfriend was expecting their first child in a few weeks’ time.

Fisher was ordered to pay a £120 victim surcharge and Fraser, a £100 victim surcharge.

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