Garage owner sent knife pair packing

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TWO men have been jailed for attempting to rob Nedderton Service Station at knifepoint.

Reece Palmer and Shaun Trotter targeted the garage near Stannington Station at 8.45am in August this year, but were sent packing empty-handed by owner Khizer Khan.

Palmer approached Mr Khan brandishing a knife, telling him: “This is an armed robbery. Open the till,” Newcastle Crown Court heard this week.

Palmer and Trotter were high on a cocktail of drink and drugs at the time of the failed robbery.

Jolyon Perks, prosecuting, said that Mr Khan tried to grab the knife off Palmer, but the 18-year-old kept hold of it and swiped it back at him, although he did not inflict any injuries.

Mr Perks said: “Armed with a wine bottle, Mr Khan said ‘come on then’, at which point the defendants turned on their heels and ran from the shop, with Mr Khan in close pursuit.”

While the defendants were running away, Palmer, turned and shouted to Mr Khan ‘you are a dead man’.

Both defendants, wearing hoodies with the hoods up during the attempted robbery, pleaded guilty, although it was accepted that Trotter was not aware his co-accused had a knife on him.

Defending Palmer, of no fixed address, Robert Adams said: “This is attempted robbery.

“The first point is that he did not persist with it. He did not use the knife.

“Although there was a swipe, it was one that missed.”

The court heard that Trotter, 25, of Second Avenue in Stobhill, Morpeth, has been diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

His barrister, Shaun Routledge, said: “He went with his friend that morning, held the door for a few seconds and ran away when he realised what was going on.

“Once his friend had gone into the service station and approached the till, it’s after that, he realises there is a knife there.”

Judge Paul Sloan sentenced Palmer to three years in a young offenders’ institution and Trotter to eight months behind bars.

He also praised Mr Khan for his courage.