Post office robbers jailed for five years

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Two masked men who robbed a post mistress at gunpoint have been jailed for five years.

Sam Holmes (22), of The Knole, Eltham, London, and David Leadbeater (23), of no fixed abode, targeted the village store in Tydd Gote.

Jane Wright, who had been sub post mistress at the shop for 23 years, fought back after the pair brandished what appeared to be guns.

She was kicked in the shins when she refused to help the robbers who fled with just £670.

A jury at Lincoln Crown Court heard the robbers were helped by Leadbeater’s sister, Sasha Cracknell (22), who was living at The Old School House, Allenby’s Chase, Sutton Bridge.

Cracknell, who also admitted growing cannabis in her spare bedroom, was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment suspended for 18 months and ordered to carry out 200 hours’ unpaid work.

The trio had denied robbery following the raid on June 21 but were all found guilty after a trial.

Mrs Wrightsaw two men wearing balaclavas getting out of a car just before 9am. One of the men appeared to have a handgun while the other had a gun two metres in length with a wooden butt.

Mrs Wright was pushed to the floor and kicked in the ankles but refused to reveal the code for the safe.

After the incident Mrs Wright remembered a phone call the day before the robbery asking for the post office opening times. The call was later traced to Cracknell.

The court heard Holmes and Leadbeater are already serving six-year prison sentences for car crimes in Kent.

Judge Sean Morris said he would be awarding Mrs Wright £500 out of public funds for her bravery.