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Man, 20, pushed OAP's face into ground during robbery; 32 MONTHS' JAIL FOR OFFENDER WHO WAS CAUGHT IN THE ACT TRYING TO STEAL WALLET AND PHONE.

Byline: PAUL BEARD

A 20-YEAR-OLD from Coventry targeted a vulnerable pensioner - pushing him face down on the ground as he tried to steal his wallet and phone.

The nasty attack by Mark Sweeney saw local residents in Whitley rush to the pensioner's aid - who fought back himself.

Sweeney, of Pegmill Close, Whitley, had knocked him to the ground outside the Whitley Court flats and pushed his face into the floor so he wouldn't see his attacker.

The targeted his vulnerability. account of but the to be Judge But the victim recognised him as someone he had seen about 20 times over the previous couple of years, and who had asked him for money on several occasions.

Sweeney pleaded guilty at Warwick Crown Court to carrying out the robbery on February 22.

He was jailed for two years and eight months - as the judge told him the public needed to be protected.

Prosecuter Richard Witcombe said the pensioner landed on some grass where Sweeney began going through his pockets, taking his wallet and mobile phone.

He put up a fight, and was able to hit out at his attacker before two nearby residents rushed to his aid and detained Sweeney, enabling the pensioner to recover his wallet and phone from the ground.

The police were alerted and Sweeney was held until officers arrived to arrest him, added Mr Witcombe.

was because of I take your age, public need protected.

Jailing Sweeney, Judge Barry Berlin told him: "He was an elderly man, and you approached him and pushed him down and held him face-down so he wouldn't see you.

Berlin "I have regard to the psychological report on you, but there are aggravating features.

"The victim was targeted because of his vulnerability. I take account of your age, but the public need to be protected."

Close, him had to phone from The and down face- The victim was targeted because of his vulnerability. I take account of your age, but the public need to be protected. Judge Berlin

CAPTION(S):

Mark Sweeney

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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Sep 11, 2019
Words:340
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