Knife robber gets jail term
PUBLISHED: 18:18 12 June 2009 | UPDATED: 09:36 11 August 2010
A KNIFE-wielding mugger who targeted schoolchildren was locked up for two and a half years last week. The 16-year-old donned a balaclava to take part in at least two attacks in Chadwell Heath. Joined by a 17-year-old associate and three other unidentified
A KNIFE-wielding mugger who targeted schoolchildren was locked up for two and a half years last week.
The 16-year-old donned a balaclava to take part in at least two attacks in Chadwell Heath.
Joined by a 17-year-old associate and three other unidentified louts he robbed a 16-year-old schoolboy in Grove Road, Chadwell Heath, on February 20.
Snaresbrook Crown Court heard the 16-year-old has convictions for robbing a 12-year-old boy of his bike and a 16-year-old boy of his mobile phone and Oyster card last year.
On Wednesday, June 3 the judge, Mr Recorder John Cavanagh QC, sentenced him to two and a half years in a young offenders' institution for the Grove Road mugging.
But the thug is likely to be freed late next year under an early release scheme and after spending time on remand.
The judge described the attack on the 16-year-old in February as "nasty and unpleasant".
"You approached the victim, running towards him as part of a group with four other boys," said Recorder Cavanagh.
"It was in the evening and it was dark," the judge added.
The court heard how the 16-year-old yob screamed: "What have you got for me?"
"Someone searched the victim's pockets while you raised a knife from your waistband," said the judge.
The 16-year-old chillingly warned his victim: "Don't make me put a tool in you."
"You were, it seems to me, either the ring leader or one of two ring leaders," the judge told the teenager.
"It was frankly a cowardly attack," added the judge.
The "terrified" victim, who cannot be named, was menaced for just £5, the court heard.
Prosecutor Leslie Chinweze earlier described the 16-year-old's two convictions for robbery last year.
"The victim was approached in the park by the defendant and a group of males," said the barrister.
"That victim had his mobile phone and Oyster card taken from him."
The 16-year-old also struck in a park when he preyed on a 12-year-old cyclist.
"He slapped his face and took the bike," said Mr Chinweze.
The bully also had a previous conviction for actual bodily harm, said the prosecutor.
Kim Chiswick, defending, said he won a Jack Petchey award - handed out to youngsters in east London and Essex - for recognition of his work with a youth club.
"He received a medal in May 2006," said the barrister.
But she claimed the former Redbridge College student went off the rails after the death of his uncle.
The 16-year-old, from Seven Kings, admitted robbery and having an offensive weapon.
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