A man from Thornton Heath, who attacked a shop worker with a hammer and attempted to steal cash has been jailed.

Omari Blackburn, 30 of Stratford Road was jailed for three years on Friday, November 30 at Croydon Crown Court after pleading guilty on Wednesday, November 21 to attempted robbery, assault occasioning ABH and having an offensive weapon.

He received three years’ imprisonment for attempted robbery; nine months’ imprisonment for assault occasioning ABH; and, six months’ imprisonment for possession of an offensive weapon. With each sentence to run concurrently.

The court heard on Sunday, July 29 at approximately 7:15 pm that Blackburn entered an off-licence on London Road, Thornton Heath armed with a hammer that was hidden under his jumper.

He walked behind the counter holding the hammer above his head and threatened the 50-year-old shop worker demanding he remove money from the till.

The shop worker refused and a scuffle took place with Blackburn hitting the victim over the head.

A customer who had been at the back of the store when Blackburn walked in came to the victim’s aid and helped him to remove Blackburn from the shop.

Once outside, other members of the public kept Blackburn there until police arrived a few minutes later.

The victim suffered bumps and bruising to his head along with a laceration that required four stitches.

Blackburn was charged on Monday, July 30.

Detective Constable Kathlyn Stanley-Quist, from Croydon CID said: “It’s just sheer luck that the victim was not seriously injured. I would like to take this opportunity to praise both him and the members of the public who did not look the other way but instead came to the victim’s aid and apprehended Blackburn to stop him from escaping.

“The victim only took three days off work following this incident as there was nobody else available to work in the store to cover for his absence.

“I am pleased the court has seen fit to give Blackburn a custodial sentence for what was a violent attack.”