Robbers jailed for Calne petrol station raid

This Is Wiltshire: Dylan Gaffey Dylan Gaffey

Two teenagers who robbed a petrol station worker at knifepoint, as her daughter listened on the phone, have been jailed.

Dylan Gaffey brandished a ‘wicked looking’ hunting knife at the cashier as he and Ryan Mills carried out the raid, stealing £491 and cigarettes.

As the 17-year-olds left the store, Gaffey turned round and snarled “Ring the police and I’ll slit your throat”.

Tessa Hingston, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court on Monday the offence took place at about 9.30pm on August 27 last year.

Joanne Burton was working alone in the store when she saw two youths approaching with hoods down and scarves over their faces.

At the time she was on the phone to her daughter and put her mobile down leaving the line open.

As the pair, both now 18, approached the counter, Gaffey pulled out a knife with a four or five inch silver blade and pointed it about a foot from her stomach. Miss Hingston said: “He very aggressively said: ‘Empty the till: put the money in a bag’.”

She said Ms Burton was scared to go to work at the garage afterwards, and has since left her job there.

Gaffey, of Cloatley Crescent, Royal Wootton Bassett, and Mills, of Broken Cross, Calne, both admitted robbery.

Alex Daymond, defending Gaffey, said his client was so drunk he could remember little of the incident and realised he was facing a lengthy jail term.

After a poor upbringing he said he had got involved in drugs and committed the offence to pay dealers. He said Gaffey’s partner had recently given birth to their first child and both were poorly in hospital. Mr Daymond asked for the sentencing to be adjourned to allow him to care for them, but the judge refused.

Baljit Somal, for Mills, said his client had not been the main player and there had been an amount of ‘coercion’ to get him involved.

Judge Douglas Field imposed a 28- month jail term on Gaffey and 24 months on Mills, saying he played the lesser role. Petrol station manager Thuraisingam Yogamoorthy thanked the police for their help.

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