Man with meat cleaver jailed for petrol station robbery

Matthew Woods carried out a robbery at a St Albans petrol station wielding a meat cleaver.

Matthew Woods carried out a robbery at a St Albans petrol station wielding a meat cleaver. - Credit: Herts police

A man who wielded a meat cleaver when he carried out a robbery at a petrol station in St Albans has been jailed for four years.

Matthew Woods, 23, from Hamilton Road in Barnet, was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court on Monday after pleading guilty to robbery, possession of a bladed article, breach of a Criminal Behaviour Order and possession of cannabis.

Shortly after 9.10pm on Saturday September 4, Woods entered the Esso garage on London Road and demanded that a female member of staff open the till, before producing a six to eight inch meat cleaver. He took cash and left the garage.

A police investigation identified Woods as the suspect and he was arrested in Gloucester last month.

He was charged and remanded into custody before his court appearance.

Investigator Jacob Smith from the St Albans Local Crime Unit said: “Thankfully no one was hurt during the incident but this was, understandably, a very frightening ordeal for staff.

“I’m pleased that Woods is now off the streets and I hope this serves as a warning to anyone involved in criminality that we will do whatever it takes to track offenders down and bring them to justice, especially those who endanger others by carrying weapons.

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