Watch: Police release audio of 999 call after bank robber asked for advice on handing himself in
An armed robber who stole around £400-worth of discontinued £20 notes asked police for advice shortly before handing himself in.
Roy Sinclair pulled a knife on a cashier at a Lloyds Bank in Dartford High Street, Kent, and threatened to kill her before forcing her to hand over the money during the robbery on 4 February.
The 43-year-old, from Sydenham, south-east London, entered the bank at around 3pm and was seen by members of staff wandering around the building.
When a cashier called to offer help, he walked behind their counter, pulled out a knife, and held it close to her body and demanded money, telling her: "No alarms or I’ll kill you.”
The victim opened the till and Sinclair stole roughly £400 in cash before running away with the money that was made up of discontinued paper £20 bank notes – which are still legal tender until the end of September this year.
But two days later, Sinclair phoned Kent Police and confessed to the robbery while calmly asking the call handler for advice about how to hand himself in.
He was at a bus stop trying to make his way to a police station, but could not wait any longer, so called police and officers in a car came and picked him up.
When officers were dispatched to arrest him, he was found wearing a similar hoodie to the one he wore carrying out the robbery.
A pair of green jogging bottoms, which were worn when the heist was committed were also found at his home when it was searched by officers, police said.
Sinclair was jailed for five years and four months at Maidstone Crown Court this week, after pleading guilty to robbery and possessing an offensive weapon in a public place.
He will also be the subject of a two-year extended licence when he is eventually released from prison.
Constable Emma Laimbeer, Kent Police’s investigating officer for the case, said: “The victim of this case had every good reason to believe their life was in danger and I am pleased we have now secured justice for them.
"Although Sinclair admitted the offence, it does not in any way undo the harm he has caused and the only proportionate outcome is for him to receive this custodial sentence.
"We will never show any tolerance towards anyone who chooses to use violence against innocent members of the public."