Armed robber gave his real name to Leeds Nationwide Building Society staff before making gun threats and handing over note demanding cash

A robber left building society staff terrified after handing them a note demanding cash and telling them he was armed with a gun.

By Tony Gardner
Friday, 8th January 2021, 4:45 pm

Chris Scott made off with £2,400 during the raid at the Nationwide branch on Albion Street, in Leeds city centre.

The violent offender was given an extended prison sentence of six years over the robbery which took place on August 3 last year.

Leeds Crown Court heard the 40-year-old went into the premises, gave his name to a member of staff and said he wanted to withdraw funds from his account.

Chris Scott was given a six-year extended sentence for robbing the Nationwide Building Society, on Albion Street.

He was initially directed towards a cash machine after telling the staff member he wanted to withdraw a sum below £500.

Scott then said he required more than £500 and was directed to a cashier.

The defendant handed the cashier a note which read: "Put the money in an envelope. There is something in the bag. Nobody gets hurt."

The cashier then said "you are joking me" to Scott.

Nationwide Building Society, Albion Street.

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The cashier thought she could see the outline of a gun within the bag.

The woman handed money to Scott and one of her colleagues pressed a panic button.

Scott left before police arrived and he managed to board a train to Wigan from Leeds railway station.

Kristian Kavanagh, prosecuting, said Scott was arrested by police in Wigan the next day in relation to an unrelated matter.

He was in possession of a large amount of cash.

Scott told the officers he had robbed a bank in Leeds and had already spent £700.

Mr Kavanagh said Scott, of no fixed address, admitted the offence when interviewed by police.

Scott had only been out of prison for a few days when he committed the offence.

He said he needed money to buy heroin and stated he hoped he would be sent back to custody.

Scott pleaded guilty to robbery.

He has served a prison sentence in the past for possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.

In 2006 he received another custodial term for stabbing someone in the face with a pair of scissors..

Eddison Flint, mitigating, said Scott pleaded guilty to the offence on the basis that he was not carrying a real gun or an imitation firearm.

Mr Flint said there was evidence that Scott may have been experiencing a psychotic episode at the time of the robbery due to his use of illicit drugs.

Judge Tom Bayliss QC rejected the submission, saying Scott had planned the offence as he had prepared a note beforehand.

Scott was told he must serve a custodial term of four years followed by a further two years on licence.

Judge Bayliss told the defendant: "Mr Scott, you are someone who over the years has regularly appeared before the courts for offences of violence.

"You have been sent to custody and you continue to behave in a violent way.

"It was not, in my judgement, any psychotic disorder which caused you to commit this offence.

"It was in order to get yourself money. Your motivation was the acquisition of property."