Teenager is sentenced to five years in prison after launching ‘terrifying’ attack on Dunmow store manager

Dunmow Co-op. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

Dunmow Co-op. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO - Credit: Archant

A teenager who shoplifted from a Dunmow convenience store before attacking its manager in a ‘terrifying and traumatic’ episode has been sentenced to five years in prison.

The court heard Rudkin took two bottles of vodka from The Co-op Food, in White Street, on February 18 this year before he was followed into the car park by customer team leader, Kevin Barry.

Michael Crimp, prosecuting, said: “Mr Barry noticed the defendant picked up pace and started running and laughing out loud. Mr Barry ran behind him and grabbed one of the bottles with the intention to get it back.

“As he grabs it the defendant spun round and raised the other bottle above his head and said ‘want me to do you?’.”

Rudkin then launched the bottle at Mr Barry, who was able to dodge it, and started punching him in the chest and head.

The court heard both men ended up on the ground, with Rudkin reportedly biting the manager near his ear and trying to get him into a headlock.

“Mr Barry started to panic and thought he was going to be strangled. He used the vodka bottle to hit the defendant’s head to try and stop him and hit him two or three times before it smashed.”

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Rudkin began walking away, but decided to return moments later to punch Mr Barry and press his thumbs into his eyes.

The manager was taken to hospital where he received 14 stitches near his ear.

In mitigation, Sasha Bailey said Rudkin had previously been diagnosed with a personality disorder but that he was taking medication.

She added that Rudkin has recently “connected with faith” and that he is remorseful.

His Honour Judge David Turner QC said: “This was a man who had gone to work that morning to do his job for the people of Dunmow and did it effectively and courageously.

“By that evening he had been through an utterly terrifying and traumatic episode because of your evil conduct.”

Rudkin, who appeared wearing a cross, was sentenced to five years at a young offenders’ institute for the assault, and a month for the theft to run concurrently.

He will serve half of his sentence in custody and the other on licence.