A ROBBER who threatened shop staff with a screwdriver before hiding cash in his underpants has been put behind bars.
Nathan Ariss ordered staff at McColl’s convenience store in Jarrow to open the till while armed with a screwdriver, and made off with money.
The 29-year-old had pointed the weapon at female workers during the afternoon raid and shouted “open the till, give me some money”.
Newcastle Crown Court heard he left the shop with an estimated £400 after the raid in June.
One of the female shopworkers said she was worried about going back to work or even leaving her home after the ordeal.
Ariss was picked up by police later that day after CCTV from the shop showed his identity.
Neil Pallister, prosecuting, told the court: “The defendant was in an alleyway and appeared to be putting something down his tracksuit bottoms.
“He was arrested on suspicion of robbery, and taken to the police station.
“He was told at the police station he was going to be strip-searched.
“He then pulled his underpants down and said ‘there you go then’ and a quantity of bank notes fell to the floor, totalling £285.”
Ariss, of Percy Street, Jarrow, told detectives he had not been coping well since his release from a five year sentence for a previous robbery.
Mr Pallister said: “He said he found it difficult to cope on the outside and decided he wanted to go back to prison.”
Ariss, of Percy Street, Jarrow, admitted robbery and having an offensive weapon.
Mr recorder Kramer sentenced him to three years and eight months behind bars.
The judge said: “Robbery is a serious offence.
“A weapon in the form of a screwdriver was brandished.
“This was a robbery of a general dealers shop with two female assistants who were vulnerable to this sort of behaviour.”
Barry Robson, defending, said in a desperate effort to be put behind bars, Ariss had deliberately showed his face during the robbery and had told the shop staff he could be seen on the footage.