By Harriet Ernstsons 22/06 Updated: 22/06 18:37
A MAN who stole £30,000 worth of jewellery after robbing a town centre store has been jailed.
Damon Cripps denied taking part in the raid on James the Jewellers on George Walk on March 16 last year as well as burgling a house in Patch Lane, Oakenshaw two weeks earlier, but was found guilty following a trial at Hereford Crown Court. He was sentenced to six years for the robbery and another year for the burglary.
He was also given six months after a suspended sentence for theft was activated by his involvement in both crimes, but the judge cut it in half because of time Cripps had spent on tag.
The 24-year-old from Newland Close in Woodrow was one of two men who entered the store and used hammers to smash the display cabinets to steal rings, chains and bracelets. A Nintendo Wii, Playstation 3, laptop and computer games were stolen during the house break-in.
Det Con Andy Baxter said: "High value robberies like this are uncommon in Redditch but when they do happen, they have a huge impact on the people who work in our local businesses.
"The store was open at the time of the robbery and this was a very frightening experience for the members of staff and also a customer.
"We are satisfied with the sentence handed down to Cripps and it is the result of a painstaking inquiry, which involved an extensive investigation of CCTV and forensic evidence.
"Hopefully it will provide reassurance to the victims and witnesses of these crimes and the wider community to know that Cripps has received this lengthy prison sentence."
He added despite help from the public, which had proved the key to the investigation, the stolen jewellery had never been found.
Anyone with any information who has not spoken to officers already should call 0300 333 3000, quoting incident number 159-S-160311, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.
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