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Grays Valentine’s Day robber jailed

Nathan McKenzie was sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison

A 23-year-old man has been jailed after attacking and stealing from a man on Valentine’s Day in Grays.

Nathan McKenzie, of Aluric Close, was one of two perpetrators who stole a bag and wallet off a man in his 30s, after the incident on Thursday, 14 February around 8.30pm.

The two men approached the victim as he left the railway station and walked along Church Path, leaving him with a cut to his leg and punches to the face.

Stolen cards from the individual’s wallet were used in a number of shops with transactions totalling more than £370.

It is believed the men had got into a taxi outside the railway station and one of them was dropped off at the Post Office in Riverview, Chadwell St Mary.

The men were caught on CCTV in a couple of instances. After the victim made chase, they were captured running away with one of them holding a meat cleaver.

The second time they were seen on shop CCTV entering the store but being declined to make a transaction.

Officers recovered a knife he had been seen to dispose into a nearby bin when McKenzie was arrested on Thursday, 7 March.

He was later charged with robbery, possession of a knife in a public place, possession of an offensive weapon in a public place, and fraud by false representation.

He admitted the charges.

The sentence was given at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday, 10 October. McKenzie received four-and-a-half years in prison.

Investigating officer PC Paul Lamb, from Grays CID, said: “Nathan McKenzie is a dangerous offender who appears to have few concerns about threatening violence to get what he wants.

“He carried out a litany of offences including carrying weapons in a very public place. This is simply not acceptable.

“Diligent work by our officers led to him being identified and he now faces significant time behind bars.

“Essex will no doubt be a safer place with him in prison and I hope he takes the opportunity to reflect on his actions.”

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