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Horley fake firearm robber jailed
2:48pm Monday 8th October 2012 in Local News
A Horley man who carried out robberies in local stores threatening staff with a fake firearm has been jailed.
Alex Highfield, 22, of Hurst Road, was sentenced to eight and a half years in prison for the two robberies and other offences.
Police called him a blight on the community.
Highfield had pleaded guilty to the charges earlier at Guildford Crown Court.
As well as the two robbery charges, he also faced two counts of possession of an imitation firearm and two counts of possession of a class B drug, as well as a charge of attempted theft relating to a separate incident.
The court heard that Highfield had entered the Late Night Pharmacy in Victoria Road, Horley, at about 8.30pm on Tuesday, April 10.
He threatened the staff there with what was later found to be an imitation firearm, before leaving with what police called an amount of controlled medication.
Earlier that day, the court heard Highfield had also carried out an attempted theft.
Just under two months later, on Thursday, June 7, Highfield used an imitation firearm again to rob the Food Wise Convenience Store in Lee Street, Horley.
Brandishing the fake weapon, he threatened staff before leaving with around £200 in cash and around 40 packets of cigarettes.
After the trial, investigating officer Detective Constable Kerry Akehurst of Reigate CID, said: "I am really pleased with the sentence handed to Highfield as it demonstrates that justice will be served to anyone committing crime in our county.”
Neighbourhood Sergeant for the Horley area Simon Ward, said: "Highfield blighted our community with his persistent offending and I hope that the sentence handed to him will serve as reassurance to the Horley community that we will do all we can to bring offenders to justice.”