Armed robber help up Leeds pharmacy with revolver

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AN armed robber who terrified a pharmacist with a Colt .45 revolver before demanding controlled drugs at a chemist store has been jailed for eight years.

Michael Hurd, 31, pressed the weapon against the victim’s side during the raid at a Lloyds Pharmacy and said: “Nobody move.”

The victim was then forced to open a controlled drugs cabinet and hand over drugs including Subutex and methadone.

In the early hours of the same day, February 20 this year, Hurd also carried out a knife-point robbery at an Esso petrol station on Armley Road, Leeds.

Hurd threatened a female cashier with the weapon before trying to use it to force open a till. He left the premises with a mobile phone

Hurd was out of prison on licence for a similar spate of armed robberies when he carried out the attack.

Police were soon able to identify him from CCTV footage from the incidents as he failed to wear a disguise. His DNA was also left at the scene. When officers went to arrest Hurd he told them he had a Colt .45 but it had been decommissioned and he had thrown it away.

Officers recovered the weapon from a rooftop near to his home.

Hurd, of Bracken Court, Holbeck, pleaded guilty to two offences of robbery, one of possession of an imitation firearm and one of possession of an offensive weapon. The court heard Hurd was jailed for six years in 2011 after admitting three robbery offences.

Adrian Pollard, mitigating, said Hurd’s offending was linked to his addiction to drugs. He said Hurd was sorry for what he had done and was shocked at the way he had behaved. Mr Pollard said: “He recognises that it must have been terrifying.” The Recorder of Leeds, Judge Peter Collier, QC, said: “The pharmacist had no reason to think the gun was not real.”