They attempted to rob a Londis store in Leeds using samurai swords
CCTV footage released by the police captures the moment when Jeffrey Chikosha, 25, and Brandon Jarrett, 23, along with an unidentified accomplice, attempted to rob a Londis store in Leeds using samurai swords.
In the harrowing video, Jarrett can be heard threatening a female shop worker, demanding she open the till. He said: “Open the till or you’re gonna get hurt.”
When she struggled to open the till, the masked thug held his weapon up and shouted: “Open it or I’m gonna hit you with it.”
It was at this point the heroic customer, who had been held at bay by one of the knife-wielding robbers, decided to challenge Jarrett.
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As the situation escalated, Chikosha, who was busy packing cigarettes into a duvet cover, forcefully pushed the woman away from the counter to prevent her from activating the panic alarm. Seizing the opportunity, he proceeded to pry open the till with his bare hands, while his accomplice stood guard on the shop floor.
The customer continued to challenge the trio, telling them: “Make it quick and leave.” He warned them he would retaliate by throwing objects at them.
When Jarrett approached him once again, the customer seized a box of beer bottles, holding it above his head as he prepared to launch it at the criminals. Shouting repeatedly for them to leave, he hurled the box at them and chased them out of the shop, armed with another heavy box.
Despite their advantage in numbers and possession of large blades, the three robbers fled from the scene. The female shop worker, although left badly shaken, fortunately did not sustain any physical injuries during the ordeal.
The terrifying raid at the Londis store on Wetherby Road in Leeds took place on December 23, 2021.
Shockingly, this was not the first time the gang had targeted stores in the city.
At 6.20pm on December 13, 2021, they burst into Skelton Wood Post Office and convenience store in White Laithe Approach, Whinmoor.
And at 6.45pm on December 29, 2021, the gang struck at the Co-op in Selby Road again masked and armed with swords.
Jarrett guarded the entrance wielding a sword while Chikosha and a third man took cash from the tills and emptied the shelves of cigarettes and tobacco.
Police discovered Jarrett and Chikosha had called a taxi from a nearby location 10 minutes after the offence, which dropped Chikosha off close to his address.
The police investigation into the armed robberies led to the arrest of Jarrett and Chikosha. Detective Constable Alan Andrews, of West Yorkshire Police, identified Chikosha through his distinctive walk and his voice, which matched the audio captured on CCTV during the Londis robbery. The evidence was further supported by a specialist voice recognition expert who compared it with previous police custody audio and a recording from the taxi booking.
Jarrett pleaded guilty to the charges, while Chikosha was convicted after a trial at Leeds Crown Court. The pair, who had previously been incarcerated for vehicle theft, were sentenced to six years and nine months and nine years, respectively.
Detective Inspector Vicky Vessey praised the bravery of the customer, acknowledging that his actions played a crucial role in bringing the incident to a swift and safe conclusion.
She said: “While we always advise people caught up in such potentially dangerous situations to put their safety first, his actions clearly made the difference in bringing this incident to a conclusion before anyone was seriously hurt.
“We will be making sure that his courage is formally recognised through our awards process. Jarrett and Chikosha are prolific criminals who were responsible for this series of armed robberies that saw the victims put through really frightening ordeals.
“They were masked and armed with samurai swords during these incidents and the victims were put in genuine fear that they could get seriously hurt. We do not underestimate the traumatic impact that these incidents will have had on them.
“The footage from the robbery at the Londis store shows very starkly what a terrifying experience this was for those involved. We know that offenders like them brag about ‘no face, no case’ if they wear masks while committing offences, but DC Andrews’ detailed knowledge of local criminals and investigative skills have shown them that their arrogance is misplaced.”
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