Mablethorpe man who threatened to stab Co-op till operator jailed

A former Mablethorpe man who threatened to stab a till operator during a robbery at a Lincoln Co-op store was today (Monday) jailed for three years.

Lincoln crown court.
Lincoln crown court.

Lee Grayson, 30, entered the shop in Queen Elizabeth Road, on the Ermine Estate, wearing a black hoodie and baseball cap.

Eunice Gedzah, prosecuting, told Lincoln Crown Court that Grayson then approached the till operator and warned them: "Don't make any sudden movements, I have a knife."

Miss Gedzah said the till operator could not see Grayson's arms but took the threat seriously.

The till operator explained that they could not open the till because they were in the middle of a transaction with a nine-year-old boy who was buying a bottle of Lucozade.


Grayson took the Lucozade bottle from the boy and passed it to the cashier, the court heard.

The bottle was later examined by forensics experts and found to contain a finger print matching Grayson.

Miss Gedzah said Grayson then vaulted behind the counter and repeated his earlier threat, telling the till operator: "I'm going to stab you if you don’t open it."

The till was opened and Grayson took £345 in cash.


Grayson was tackled by the store manager as he left the shop but managed to escape after losing one trainer from his foot.

Lincolnshire Police asked for help in finding Grayson and he was eventually arrested but made no comment during interview.

Grayson, formerly of Mablethorpe, but now of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to the robbery at Queen Elizabeth Road Co-op on 19 March this year.

The court heard Grayson had 16 previous convictions and was on licence for a previous robbery when he carried out the Co-op offence.


Mark Knowles, mitigating, said Grayson did not produce a weapon and carried out the robbery without any planning.

Mr Knowles told the court: "On release from his previous sentence he anticipated going back to Mablethorpe where his brother had organised a job for him.

"Unfortunately the probation hostel was some distance away, and Mr Grayson says there were a number of drug addicts and some difficulties.

"On this particular day it all became too much for him and he committed this robbery."


Passing sentence Recorder Matthew Boyle told Grayson: "I accept you did not produce a knife on this occasion, but there was a young boy present and it was a thoroughly unpleasant incident."