Seven-year prison term for Belfast father-of-two who robbed a shop at knifepoint
A father-of-two who admitted robbing an east Belfast off licence armed with a knife has been sentenced to seven years in jail.
William McGreevy (40), of Strandburn Park in the city, was told his actions caused "extreme distress" to customers in the Winemark, who he ordered to lie on the floor.
Belfast Crown Court heard McGreevy fled, but a customer gave chase and grabbed a set of car keys from him.
Judge Kerr heard McGreevey targeted the Winemark on the Cregagh Road on November 5, 2014. Wearing a baseball hat to disguise his identity, McGreevy brandished a knife and made staff hand over cash and cigarettes.
As he left with £209 in cash and £576 worth of cigarettes, McGreevy threatened customers and told them to lie on the floor. However, one man gave chase and as McGreevy was trying to drive away, the customer grabbed McGreevy's car keys.
Judge Kerr, praised the customer's "courage and determination".
McGreevy escaped in a taxi, paying the driver with a packet of cigars he had just stolen.
The court heard McGreevy had a "significant" criminal record, and that the robbery was committed while he was on bail.