Terrified girl is told: ‘Give me the bag or I will kill you’

JAILED Robert Clark
JAILED Robert Clark

Shoplifter must pay

Have your say

A THUG who mugged a girl and threatened to kill her as she walked home at night has been jailed for two years.

Robert Clark tried to snatch the teenager’s handbag but she refused to let go of it.

When her male friend joined the struggle, Clark punched him.

He told them: ‘I will give you one warning and one warning only.

‘Give me the bag or I will kill you.’

The 17-year-old girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said: ‘I can honestly say I have never felt that scared in my whole life.

‘I really thought that the male was going to cause us harm.

‘The incident left me feeling shaken and sick.’

The girl and her friend, who was also 17, were walking in Old Commercial Road, Buckland, Portsmouth, when Clark struck in the early hours of the morning in November last year.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard the 38-year-old has a long list of previous convictions including another robbery and offences of violence.

Clark, of Milton Road, Milton, pleaded guilty to robbery.

Matthew Hardyman, defending, said Clark had struggled with alcoholism since he was 15.

Mr Hardyman said: ‘He is getting too old for this.

‘I won’t repeat the term that he used but he is getting too old for this.

‘He feels disgusted and ashamed.

‘He has let himself down.’

Jailing Clark, Judge John Dixon praised the young girl.

He said: ‘Having tried to take the bag she resisted.

‘This young woman showed extraordinary courage and presence of mind in the face of your dangerous bullying and your threats.

‘It was an appalling incident and it is a mercy she wasn’t injured seriously, or her friend that was with her, by the way you behaved.

‘It would be easy to write you off as a dangerous thug but you’re not.

‘You are, when you are sober, a perfectly reasonable man.

‘In a way that’s what makes this offence so serious.

‘You were so drunk and drugged that I suspect you didn’t know what you were doing.’

Jailing Clark, the judge added: ‘I am afraid the very circumstances of this offence, let alone your poor record, makes a prison sentence inevitable.

‘Nothing less than that will do to make the seriousness of the offence that you committed against this young woman.’