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Gosport man sentenced to more than three years in prison for attempted robbery and possession of a lock knife in a public place.

Press release   •   Dec 13, 2018 14:24 GMT

A Gosport man who admitted attempted robbery and possession of a lock knife in a public place has been jailed for forty months.

At around 7:15pm on Thursday 8 November a man on a bicycle tried to grab a 33 year-old woman’s handbag as she was walking through the alleyway between Morrisions and Clarence Road in Gosport. The woman resisted and kept hold of the bag, her husband detained the man on the bike at the scene until police arrived. The suspect was arrested and searched and found to be in possession of a lock knife.

At Portsmouth Crown Court on Monday 10 December 39 year-old Richard Lee Keady of Landon Road admitted attempted robbery and possession of a lock knife in a public place.

He was sentenced to:

  • 22 months in prison for attempted robbery.
  • 6 months in prison for possessing the knife in a public place to be served concurrently to the attempted robbery.
  • 18 months in prison for breach of a suspended sentence to be served consecutively to the attempted robbery.

Police Staff Investigator William Johnston said: “This sentence sends a clear message that Keady’s actions were totally unacceptable. The fact that he had a knife on him could have seen the situation escalate very quickly. While I commend the actions of the woman and her husband we would never advise anyone to confront someone that tries to steal your property in the street. Always dial 999 as quickly as possible in an emergency.

“I’d also advise people to be aware of their surroundings while walking at night. It’s not just other pedestrians that you need to look out for, as in this case, thieves may use bicycles or other modes of transport to make a quick getaway. Always report anything suspicious that you may see while out and about by calling 101 or visiting our website”.

Here are some useful ways to keep you and your property safe on the street.

Look confident

You are less likely to be targeted if you look confident. Move with purpose and try to be aware of your surroundings.

Know where you’re going

Plan your route and think about what to take with you, especially if you’re going somewhere you haven’t been before. Keep to busy, well-lit streets, walkways and paths which are more likely to be covered by CCTV. Only take licensed taxis or minicabs booked by phone or a mobile phone app.

Hide it

Keep your mobile phone and valuables out of sight. If you’re using your phone it’s more likely to be snatched from your hand as you’re not paying attention to your surroundings, so look around you.

And never leave a mobile, any other device, wallet or purse on the table of an outdoor café, pub or restaurant. Same goes for any jewellery you might be wearing – keep it covered when walking down the street.

Finally – and this is so important to remember – if you’re threatened with violence, don’t risk your personal safety. Property can be replaced, you can’t. See our page of advice on responding to violent situations.