A sick robber has been jailed for more than six years after targeting two pensioners – pulling gold earrings from one while she shopped.
Lukeny Pedro grabbed an 83-year-old woman from behind in a shop and pulled her gold earrings from her ears, a court heard.
Five weeks before, he robbed a pensioner on a bus, grabbing an £1,100 gold chain from round his neck.
Pedro, aged 24, of Sydenham Road, Smethwick, pleaded guilty to two charges of robbery and one of fraud at Warwick Crown Court.
Judge Peter Cooke jailed him for a total of six years and eight months.
Prosecutor Ian Speed said on April 17 a 73-year-old Asian pensioner, who suffers from Parkinson’s, was targeted on a bus at Pool Meadow bus station in Coventry.
He had his gold chain and pendant pulled from round his neck by Pedro, who ran from the bus with it.
Later that day, police were contacted by staff at H&T Pawnbrokers to say that a man had just sold them a chain with a distinctive pendant.
On May 27, an 83-year-old Asian woman was shopping in the Iceland store in Coventry city centre when she was grabbed by the shoulder from behind by Pedro who then pulled her gold earrings from her ears.
But he was caught and detained by security staff and, following his arrest, officers recognised him from the CCTV at the pawnbrokers as the person who had sold the chain.
Both victims said their ordeals had left them feeling shocked and frightened, and the woman added: “I have been in England for 50 years and nothing like this has ever happened before.”
Mr Speed added that Pedro had previous convictions for offences including robbery, and at the time he was on licence from a four-month sentence imposed in October last year for burglary.
Evan Cranfield, defending, conceded: “It’s just a case of custody and a question of how long that sentence will be.”
He said that following Pedro’s release from Pentonville prison in December, he had been found temporary accommodation in Birmingham, and he had wanted to turn his life around.
“But he had no friends or family or other support in Birmingham, and he was also going through relationship problems with his long-term girlfriend because she was in London and he was in Birmingham, and he started using drugs again.
“At the time of the offences, he was suffering from the effects of withdrawal, and out of desperation to feed his habit, he committed these offences.
“He is full of regret. He feels he really has hit rock bottom, and he does believe this is as bad as his offending will get.”
Jailing Pedro, Judge Cooke told him: “You are a young man, still only 24, and you have expressed the wish that this represents the low point to which you will sink in your career as an offender – but it’s a well-established career.
“I am dealing with you for robbing two elderly people, the first an elderly gentleman on a bus who is not just advanced in years but is a Parkinson’s sufferer.
“Then a short while later an unfortunate lady of 83 was the victim of a violent taking of her earrings, snatched from her and causing her pain and causing her to fall.
“Your offending is aggravated by your targeting of elderly victims.”