A jewellery thief who pretended to be a customer before attempting to steal an gold bracelet from a shop in Rochester has been jailed.

A 21-year-old man brazenly went into the business in the High Street at around 11am on Thursday 22 February 2024. He then asked to look at the bracelet valued at £1,225, which was displayed behind a glass window.

A woman working at the premises took it from the display and passed it to him to inspect but almost immediately, he attempted to flee with the bracelet, however the shop worker was able to block his exit while another woman activated the door lock.

The two employees were able to retrieve the bracelet but he pulled off the door handle as he sought to escape. Fearing for their safety, the women then allowed him to leave the shop. The police were alerted, and an investigation was started and a forensic examination of the shop door recovered the offender’s fingerprints.

The man, from Gravesend, was arrested on Friday 15 March. He was later charged the same day with attempted robbery and criminal damage.

He pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court and on Monday 20 May 2024, the 21-year-old was sentenced to one year and nine months’ imprisonment. He was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge.

Investigating officer PC Elli Langford said that he targeted a high-value item of jewellery but was foiled by the quick-thinking actions of those working at the business.

‘Not only did he leave the shop empty-handed but he incriminated himself by leaving his fingerprints behind. This was shocking for the employees who feared they would be harmed during the incident. I hope that this sentence offers them some reassurance and acts as a deterrent to other would-be criminals.’

PC Elli Langford

By Ed

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