A THIEF who punched a shopkeeper in the face as he made off with beer and cigarettes has been jailed for 25 months.
Kurt Waters (25) assaulted the 61-year-old shopkeeper at Victoria Mini Market on Victoria Street, Kilnhurst, on January 19 last year.
He was jailed for the violent attack at Sheffield Crown Court last Friday.
Ms Jessica Randall, prosecuting, said the shopkeeper was at the till at about 8am when Waters entered the store.
Waters picked up a four-pack of beer and at the till he asked for a packet of cigarettes.
He put the cigarettes in his jacket and the cans in a plastic bag and asked if he could pay by card, Ms Randall said.
Waters put some coins on the counter and ran to the door in an attempt to flee.
The shopkeeper ran after Waters and tried to grab the cans from him, Ms Randall said.
Waters punched the shopkeeper in the face and his nose began to bleed, Ms Randall said.
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The shopkeeper punched him back, but as Waters made off he threw a can of beer at the shopkeeper, cutting his face.
Waters fled with beer and cigarettes worth £14.60.
Ms Randall played CCTV footage to the court which showed the shopkeeper grappling with Waters as he tried to stop him from stealing the goods.
Waters was arrested and told officers that he had been taking crack cocaine at the time of the offence.
He said he had wanted some beers but only had enough money for three or four pints, Ms Randall said.
When he realised he didn’t have enough money he had tried to flee.
Waters, of Hague Avenue, Rawmarsh, went on the run for several months and was circulated as wanted by police until he was caught and appeared at court in November.
He pleaded guilty to offences of theft and wounding at a previous hearing.
He had six convictions for ten previous offences.
Mitigating, Ms Laura Marshall said her client wanted to apologise to the shopkeeper.
“He is appalled by his own behaviour on that day,” she said.
“He was very keen for the complainant not to be brought to court to have to relive what happened that day.”
Judge Sarah Wright said the incident had been a violent assault.
“Shopkeepers provide a valuable service to the community and need to be protected from this sort of appalling offending involving serious violence,” she said.
“The CCTV footage of this incident is truly shocking.”