A 28-year-old man who robbed four small businesses in east Belfast whilst brandishing a knife and issuing threats has been jailed.
Jason Darren Hagans, from Briar Park in Ballywalter, was given a sentence of six years and two months by Judge Patricia Smyth for a total of 11 offences.
On Friday, Belfast Crown Court heard the first business Hagans targeted was Winemark on the Beersbridge Road in November 2014.
Then on December 16, 2014, a total of three businesses were robbed – Russells Shop 4 U, McDonald’s Pharmacy, and a Mace – all in the Castlereagh Road area.
He tried to rob the Candy Box store on the Woodstock Road, approaching a female employee with a knife and threatening to cut her throat – but this worker lifted a mallet from under the counter, and chased after him as he fled.
He was arrested in February in possession of cannabis.
He admitted he carried out the robberies to buy drugs and alcohol.