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Recovering Newtown drug addict guilty of shop robbery

Published date: 12 May 2017 |
Published by: Court Reporter
Read more articles by Court Reporter


 

A convicted drug dealer and recovering heroin addict has been found guilty of robbing an Oswestry shopkeeper of cash and cigarettes.

Carl Cowans, of Garth Owen, Newtown, was said to have carried out the raid at the Boozed-Up store in Salop Road on November 21, last year.

At Shrewsbury Crown Court last week a jury found him guilty of the robbery but cleared Cowans of a charge of being in possession of a knife.

Judge Peter Barrie adjourned sentence on 35-year-old Cowans until Friday, today, for reports and a victim impact statement from the shopkeeper.

The defendant, who denied robbing Harkamal Dhillon and being in possession of a kitchen knife, was remanded in custody.

The jury heard that £450 in cash and some Lambert and Butler cigarettes were stolen from the off-licence.

Minutes after the robbery Cowans was seen by police who were already at a flat in Chaucer Road, where the defendant turned up ‘soaking wet’ and ‘out of breath’.

Officers recovered the cash from Cowans’ wallet tucked into his waist band and a packet of cigarettes and he was arrested.

Mr Dhillion later picked out Cowans on a video identification parade.

Cowans said the shopkeeper had been confused when he identified him and it was a case of mistaken identity.

The defendant said he had only been in the off-licence on one previous occasion.

He suggested he had been with a girlfriend at a nearby ‘crack house’ at the time of the raid and that he had saved the cash recovered from his wallet by police.

Cowans claimed it was from work as a driver and a labourer and from ‘grafting’ – a slang for shoplifting – and not the robbery.

He admitted that he had an extensive criminal record which included convictions for conspiracy to supply drugs and shoplifting.

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