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Milking Bank man avoids jail for bus robbery
11:01am Wednesday 19th September 2012 in Local
A MILKING Bank man struggling with the "demon of drugs" has been allowed to keep his freedom after he robbed a frightened schoolboy on the top deck of a bus.
Judge Helen Hughes told Shirron Palmer, of Kirby Drive, she was just able to allow him to keep his freedom because he was taking determined steps to put his life back on track.
"You are lucky not be going straight to prison," the Judge told the 23 year-old as she gave him a 12 month jail term suspended for two years with two years supervision.
Palmer struck on the No 74 bus to West Bromwich when he sat behind his 15 year-old victim and demanded "What have you got for me?"
Mr Trevor Meegan prosecuting said that when the boy replied "Nothing," Palmer asked him, "Do you want to be stabbed?" and he lifted his top to reveal what the victim thought was a knife.
The boy had his ring taken from his finger by Palmer who then left the bus and just 20 minutes later he sold the stolen piece of jewellery at a pawnbrokers and spent the money on a night out.
The police were alerted about the robbery, Mr Meegan told Wolverhampton Crown Court, and they arrested Palmer who had given his correct name and address to staff at the pawn shop.
Palmer admitted robbery and was further ordered by the judge to carry out 200 hours unpaid work in the community.
Miss Alison Scott-Jones defending said: "He was struggling with the demon of drugs at the time but he has since dealt with the problem and he has been free of drugs for some time."
She added: "There are sufficient signs of improvement to encourage him to maintain the progress he has already made with a suspended sentence that would put him on his mettle and test him."