A MAN felt remorse after he had robbed a shop and rang the police to confess.
Michael Macasikill, who was in debt, put on a balaclava mask, armed himself with a crowbar, and robbed a shop in Saltney.
Macasikill, 38, threatened staff and hit the till at the Go Outdoors store with the metal bar before making off with £60.
Macasikill, who had been drinking cider, gambled the cash away before he returned home.
But he felt so guilty about what he had done that he rang the police to own up.
Yesterday at Mold Crown Court, Macasikill, of Clover Place, Lache, Chester, admitted robbery and assaulting a teenage member of staff.
He was jailed for 28 months.
Judge Rhys Rowlands said it had been “a terrifying ordeal” for the staff.
Prosecuting barrister Gareth Roberts described how the robbery took place on November 26 before 7pm.
He played a CCTV recording which showed Macasikill wearing a balaclava entering the premises.
A 17-year-old staff member was approached and Macasikill swore at him and demanded money.
He grabbed him from behind, dragged him in a headlock about seven to ten feet to the tills, and brought the bar down on one of the tills.
Staff backed away and the manager, alerted by screams, ran to the till area and found Macasikill waving the bar around and asking who could get him the money.
A female member of staff was screaming at him that she could not do so.
The manager said he could open the till but it would take two minutes. He started to open the till and was cornered by Macasikill.
Mr Roberts said the manager feared he would be struck if he made a mistake on the keypad.
The manager opened the till and stepped back, Macasikill grabbed the money and left saying: “Is that all there is?”
Cheshire police received a call from Macasikill admitting what he had done a short time later.
Police went to his home and arrested him – and he showed them where he had hidden the crowbar.
Interviewed, he said he had spent the money at Ladbrokes on the roulette machine.
He told how he had lost his job and had been drinking heavily.
A debt of £1,000 had built up and he had decided to commit a burglary at the shop.
When he arrived he found it was open and went in anyway.
Peter Barnett, defending, said Macasikill had been depressed after a friend had died, in debt, he had been drinking cider, and committed the robbery.
He was ashamed of what he had done and owned up.
Judge Rowlands said a custodial sentence was inevitable.
Fortunately, no one had been hurt, but it had been a terrifying ordeal for the victims.
He had clearly been drinking to excess, which was an aggravating feature, the judge said.
Macasikill had told a probation officer he had drunk three litres of strong cider that afternoon.