Man sentenced to 8 years in prison following attempted robbery and knife/firearms offences in Portsmouth
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A Milton man has been sentenced to 8 years in prison for knife and firearms offences in 2019 and an attempted robbery in 2020.
Matthew Smith, 23, of Milton Road, was sentenced yesterday (Thursday 28 January) at Portsmouth Crown Court.
He was sentenced for possession of a firearm without a certificate and possession of a knife blade/sharp pointed article in a public place in relation to an incident that took place in September 2019.
On September 16 2019, after a report from a member of the public, Smith was arrested by officers leaving Fratton train station after being found in possession of a pistol and a large knife. No-one was injured.
He pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a firearm without a certificate and one count of possession of a knife blade/sharp pointed article in a public place at Portsmouth Crown Court in October 2019.
He was also sentenced for an attempted robbery that took place in Southsea in September 2020.
Smith forced entry into an address on Orchard Road, Southsea on Sunday 27 September 2020 between 6pm and 6.20pm.
While at the property he demanded money and assaulted a 91-year-old man. Nothing was stolen and the victim has since recovered from his injuries.
Smith pleaded guilty to one count of robbery at Portsmouth Crown Court in November 2020.
He has also been issued with a restraining order, valid for ten years, which prohibits contact with the victim and excludes Smith from attending certain roads in the vicinity of the victim’s address.
The judge praised the victim as having shown “considerable courage” in what he described as a “persistent and sustained assault.”
Subsequently, he requested a reward from the High Sheriff for the now 92-year-old man for his bravery.
Officer in charge of the case, PC Kirsty Watts of Hampshire Constabulary’s Operation Hawk Eastern team, said: “This was a violent crime against a 91-year-old man that could have had much more serious consequences.
“This sentence sends a clear message that Smith’s behaviour was completely unacceptable and that we will thoroughly investigate and seek prosecution for these kinds of distressing and violent crimes.
“I hope that today’s sentence provides some closure to the victim on this traumatic experience.”