Robber sent to prison for life

A ROBBER who threatened staff with a gun at a Somerset post office has been sentenced to life in prison. Jason Stewart, aged 36, of no fixed abode, appeared at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday charged with attempted robbery and possessing an imitation fir

A ROBBER who threatened staff with a gun at a Somerset post office has been sentenced to life in prison.Jason Stewart, aged 36, of no fixed abode, appeared at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday charged with attempted robbery and possessing an imitation firearm with intent.Stewart had previous convictions for robbery and had only been out of prison for two days when he attempted to rob Loxton Post Office in Sevier Road last September.Postmaster Gregory Humphries, aged 70, was manning the shop on his own when Stewart, who lived in the Mead Vale area of Worle at the time, walked in with a handgun and demanded cash.Mr Humphries said: "He came up to the counter and threatened to kill me if I didn't hand over the money, but I refused to."There wasn't much money in the till so I pretended to co-operate and bent down, but pressed the alarm instead. The man scarpered. He had a get-away car but before he got in he took off his mask and a local girl saw his face."Speaking after Stewart was sentenced, Mr Humphries, who has run the post office for 35 years, said: "It's no more than he deserved. I didn't work for a fortnight afterwards, it really shook me up."Stewart's sentence means he could spend 11 years behind bars, although he will be eligible to apply for parole after five-and-a-half years.It is not the first time Mr Humphries has been face to face with an armed robber. Four years ago a man attempted to rob the post office, but the brave postmaster refused to hand over any cash and the man fled empty handed. He has never been caught.Mr Humphries said despite the robberies, he still enjoys the job, but is looking forward to retiring soon.


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