Man involved in violent Trowbridge bike robbery spared immediate jail term

A man who was involved in robbing a 17-year-boy old of his £500 bike in Trowbridge has been spared an immediate jail term.

Luke Bennett, 21, and accomplice Daniel Read approached the lad on a dark December evening and punched him, before riding off on the bike.

But after hearing that Bennett was a vulnerable man with mental health problems a judge sitting at Swindon Crown Court on Friday decided not to jail him.

Hannah Squire, prosecuting, said the victim was on his State fixed gear bike, which had been a present 18 months ago, on Tuesday, December 3.

He and a friend were cycling towards Tesco at about 7pm when one of the robbers shouted 'Oi' before 18-year-old Read punched him and Bennett rode off on the bike.

Miss Squire said the victim suffered a nasty chip to one of his front teeth as a result of the attack.

Bennett, of Lamb Ale Green, Trowbridge, and Read, of Winterslow Road, Salisbury, both admitted robbery.

Alex Daymond, for Bennett, said "He is clearly a young man of some difficulties and very vulnerable as well."

He said while his client accepted responsibility for the robbery it wasn't he who threw the punch.

Judge Tim Mousley QC said: "You were jointly in it with Daniel Read and you used violence which involved the use of a single punch, but that caused considerable damage to his tooth.

"It is quite obvious to me that you are still a relatively young man yourself with a number of problems that need to be addressed."

He imposed a 12-month jail term suspended for 18 months with supervision and 100 hours of unpaid work. Read was sent to a bail hostel to be assessed and will be sentenced in September.


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