"Patel showed no concern for anyone else"
Leicester based Imtiaz Patel, aged 42, who wore a burqa and dress to rob a shop stealing a Rolex watch worth £7,000 has been jailed for four years for the theft and nine months for possessing a knife.
Leicester Crown Court heard on February 11, 2019, how Patel entered a shop at 9.40am in Haymarket, in Leicester city centre, on January 5, 2019, and threatened a shop worker at knifepoint.
He was wearing a scarf over his face, a burqa and a dress.
First, he requested to look at the Rolex watch. He acting strangely and staff got alarmed at this behaviour.
He then told staff he wanted to look at another watch but was told by a member of staff at the store that she needed to put the Rolex away first before showing him the second watch.
At that point, he took out the knife on his possession and threatened another staff member who was standing near the door of the jewellery shop.
He then ran out of the store with the Rolex watch and dropped the knife outside the shop.
As Patel was running, he was spotted by a police officer and PCSO (Police Community Support Officer) who were on patrol in the area.
They then chased Patel and saw the Rolex watch in his possession.
They caught up with him and he was stopped and searched. A few moments after, the officers got to a call on their police radio informing them of the robbery.
The police officers arrested Patel literally five minutes after the theft at 9.45am
A review of the CCTV footage and the capture of Patel led to him getting charged with robbery and possession of a bladed article on the same day.
Patel pleaded guilty to both offences.
Both of the sentences will run in parallel. In addition, Patel was given two months in jail for breaching a community order. In total, he will serve four years and two months in jail.
Detective Constable Anna Thorpe, from Leicestershire Police, said of the case:
“It was thanks to the quick-thinking and excellent response of the officers on patrol that Patel was detained so quickly.
“Their actions in catching Patel as he left the scene of the crime left him with no choice but to admit the offence today.
“I’d also like to thank the victims of this offence for being fully co-operative with our investigation following what must have been a terrifying incident.
“Patel showed no concern for anyone else when he carried out this crime and the consequences of his actions could have been far worse.”