A robber who threatened an elderly shop keeper with a baseball bat has been jailed for six years and 46 weeks.
Scott Gillard, 39, of Eaves Lane, Chorley, struck terrified shopkeeper Jayesh Patel on the head with a modified baseball bat during the terrifying incident at his shop on Cowling Stores, Cowling Brow, Chorley, on April 14.
Gillard and an unidentified man, who was armed with an eight inch blade, then stole a black till and cash worth £400.
The terrified couple now spend £2,300 a year on a security system for the small business, the court heard.
Judge Robert Altham said: “These are people who work extraordinarily hard to provide a service to the community.
“The effects have been devastating. Mr Patel describes himself as being torn apart. He believes himself to be psychologically scarred for life.”
Prosecuting, Emma Keogh described how at about 9pm, Mr Patel was behind the till, and his wife was upstairs.
She heard a disturbance in the shop and came downstairs to see two men, one with a baseball bat and one with a knife, threatening her husband.
The court was told the pair “came into the shop forcibly so the door slammed open on its hinges” and shouted repeatedly at Mr Patel to open the till.
Gillard climbed over the counter and was on the same side as his victim.
As he shouted at the trader he hit him on the head with the bat, causing him to bleed from a wound.
Judge Altham added: “It’s clear he was extremely frightened when he saw you had a baseball bat and the other male, who has never been identified, had a knife.
“Once he’d been hit you then started grabbing at the cigarettes and putting them in a bin liner.
“The tragedy of this, reading about the defendant’s background, is he’s actually a perfectly capable man, he could work, he could be a good family man but in the meantime he’s committing serious criminal offences.”
Defending, Darren Lee Smith said: “ He realises if he doesn’t make drastic changes to his life he’ll spend longer and longer in custody.”