Hemel Hempstead man jailed for over five years after robbing two shops in the town

Anthony Smith. Photo: Twitter/HertsPolice

A man who robbed two stores in two days in Hemel Hempstead has been jailed for five years and three months.

Anthony Smith, 32, of Trevalga Way, was sentenced at Luton Court on 5 February after pleading guilty to the charges.

Smith raided the Co-op store in The Heights in the Highfield area of the town – armed with a knife – on 5 December and Express Wines in Henry Wells Square in Grovehill on 7 December.

At the Co-op store, he forced a female member of staff to open the till, after threatening shop workers with the knife. He took hundreds of pounds in cash as well as cigarettes before running out of the store.

Smith pushed a male member of staff to the ground before more than £1,000 worth of alcohol, cigarettes and cash was taken at Express Wines.

Officers nabbed him two days later. Forensic tests established the presence of his DNA on the knife he left the Co-op and on the staff’s jumper at Express Wines.

During the trial, Smith also admitted two further robberies and one attempted robbery in Hemel in December which were taken into consideration by the judge when sentencing.

Detective Constable Joel Gill of the Dacorum Local Crime Unit, who led the investigation, said: “Smith’s despicable actions terrified three innocent people who were simply doing their jobs. They were not physically injured but they were left understandably shaken by what happened.

“Smith lived less than two miles from both robbery sites and he has shown us that he is willing to go to great lengths to steal things that do not belong to him. I am glad he is now behind bars and the community is safe from his criminality.”