Dramatic security camera footage has captured the moment a masked gang burst into a jewellery store and attacked a shop worker with a hammer, before making off with £250,00 ($330,000) of jewellery.
Miraculously, the victim escaped unharmed. The video footage, together with other CCTV footage, helped convict the gang of five who have now been sentenced to long stretches in prison.
The robbery in Birmingham, UK occurred in January last year, but the gang wasn’t convicted until Tuesday Dec 12. Only £12,000 worth of the £250,000 jewellery that was stolen in the raid was recovered.
Highlighting the role of local CCTV footage in the convictions, on Dec 12. West Midlands Police posted the shocking footage of the robbery to their website.
In the video, the gang can be seen rushing into the shop—one thug is armed with a hammer.
The footage shows the assailant swing the hammer across the counter at the shop worker, appearing to hit him, and then hit him again on the floor.
The other two robbers then ransack the store, while the shop worker is repeatedly stamped on by the man with the hammer.
Meanwhile a second member of staff manages to set off the smokescreen. The assailant with the hammer makes towards her, but is driven out of the shop along with the rest of the gang by the cloud of smoke.
“The member of staff who was hit with the hammer was left really shaken and it’s by sheer luck that he wasn’t really seriously injured,” said Detective Constable Mark Timmins, who led the investigation.
“This was a really nasty robbery targeting a business in the heart of the Jewellery Quarter,” he said in a statement.
The hammer-wielding robber, Owen Richardson, 21, was jailed for 14 years for conspiracy to rob and possession of class A drugs with intent to supply.
The jury spent just 11 minutes deliberating.
The other two robbers inside the shop, Daijon Johnson, and Jamul Pinnock-Parkes, both 20, were jailed for 12 years and 9 years respectively.
Two other accomplices—which include the man at the start of the video clip who posed as a customer to allow the gang entry—were jailed for conspiracy to rob in addition to other offences.
Jermaine Davis, 27, admitted conspiracy to rob and possession with intent to supply and escaping from lawful custody. He was jailed for 14 years and 11 months.
Bradley Devine, who posed as the customer, was jailed for 10 years after admitting conspiracy to rob.
Despite the gang wearing masks, the police were able to ensure a conviction using local CCTV footage.
Thanks to a savvy taxi driver three of the gang were arrested moments after the aborted robbery.
When the smoke shield was set off, three of the men fled and tried to get away by calling a taxi. The taxi driver became suspicious when the men hid their faces and bent down to avoid being seen. So he reversed his car alongside a police car already on the lookout. The men tried to flee but were arrested at the scene.
The other two were arrested the following day when the police tracked down their car.
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