Jewellery axe raider jailed

Martin Dalton, below, a  police van outside the jewellers following the raid in October
Martin Dalton, below, a police van outside the jewellers following the raid in October
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An axe-wielding raider who staged a terrifying attempted robbery at a Blackpool jewellers has been jailed for six years.

Martin Dalton, 27, began smashing up glass cabinets with an axe when he struck at J and L Carr on Lytham Road in October.

Dalton held an axe to a store worker’s face, but his attempts were thwarted by two passers-by, one of whom brought Dalton to the ground and the other who managed to get the axe from his hand.

Dalton of Rose Avenue, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to the attempted robbery and was jailed at Preston Crown Court yesterday.

He was given five years prison, with 12 months on top for other offences of burglary and attempted burglary at two shops.

The court heard Dalton had twice been into the jewellers earlier in the day before finally going in with his hood up, a scarf covering part of his face and holding a large axe.

Emma Kehoe, prosecuting, said: “The male held the axe up to her face. She was terrified. She was stood behind a cabinet. He tried to get through the door and she threw a wooden box at him. He then turned his attention to the cabinets and began smashing them up with the axe, bringing the axe above his head and down.

“This caused a considerable amount of damage. The woman working there described herself as being terrified, frozen with fear. She was so frightened she could not even make her way to the panic button”.

Two members of the public entered the shop and went to her assistance. One brought Dalton to the ground and the other managed to get the axe out of the defendant’s hand.

Dalton himself had sustained a fractured skull through his being brought to the floor. He spent two days in hospital.

More than £500 damage was caused to the cabinets, and some rings were also damaged. The other burglary and attempted burglaries at two shops had taken place earlier that month.

One was at Blackpool Rock and Novelties Ltd where items including laptops and mobile phones were taken.

The other was at New House News where there had been kicking and banging to the front door. In each instance, Dalton was caught on CCTV.

Paul Robinson, defending, said it was inevitable Dalton would receive a prison term.

Mr Robinson said: “He has not covered himself in glory in terms of tackling his issues previously. It is hoped that during his sentence he will realise the error of his ways that he can’t go on like this, otherwise he is facing more and more lengthy sentences.”

Judge Andrew Woolman said: “This is about as serious an attempted robbery as it can get.”