Robber jailed after he left a Woodsetton woman screaming and terrified

Dudley News: Robber Ross Underwood Robber Ross Underwood

A ROBBER has been jailed for his part in a raid which left a Woodsetton widow screaming and terrified.

Wolverhampton Crown Court was told Ross Underwood and two other masked men entered the woman’s home in Fox Street, where she was alone.

The men burst into her bedroom demanding money having targeted the house because they believed the family who lived were involved in the scrap business and had cash on the premises.

The court heard the frightened mother-of-two was screaming as she was threatened by the raiders and pushed down onto the bed before the gang got away with a £10,000 watch.

Hugh O'Brien-Quinn prosecuting told the court the watch was of great sentimental value and belonged to her late husband, the gang also snatched a second watch worth £200 and the woman's mobile telephone.

Underwood was in a gang which had just days earlier taken part in incidents including a violent robbery at the Spar shop in Kingswinford.

He carried out the raid with Richard Howell, who was put behind bars for six years, and an accomplice who was carrying a crowbar.

The men got away in a stolen car with £8,000 worth of cigarettes, leaving three staff members extremely frightened.

The car, a the high powered Audi TT, was taken from a woman who was dragged from the vehicle at a retail park in Cannock with her 13-year-old daughter being left badly shaken.

Mr O'Brien-Quinn said: "These were planned, professional robberies and each of the defendants played a key role in the planning and execution.”

Underwood, aged 28 of Damson Wharf, Tipton, admitted robbing the Woodsetton woman of jewellery and was sent to prison for seven years four months while he and 37-year-old Howell of Carder Crescent, Bilston pleaded guilty to carrying out the other raids.

They were told by Judge Michael Dudley the woman, who was alone in her home had "plainly been terrified" by the gang adding, "The fear such offences engender is dreadful."

Sunit Sandhu, for Underwood, maintained his client had not been party to any threats being issued to the woman and said he was full of remorse for his actions.

Nicholas Berry, for Howell, who had been released from prison just three months earlier on licence said his client was looking for a "quick fix" for his financial problems.

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