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Maidstone: Brenda Rossiter jailed for robbing pensioner outside Sainsbury's

A woman who brandished a broken bottle as she robbed an elderly pensioner sitting in her car outside a supermarket has been jailed for just over three years.

Brenda Rossiter was high on drugs and desperate for another fix when she threatened to cut the victim before grabbing her handbag.

But the 29-year-old mother was foiled by members of the public who detained her and recovered the bag.

Brenda Rossiter has been jailed. Picture: Kent Police
Brenda Rossiter has been jailed. Picture: Kent Police

A judge said such offending called for a deterrent sentence.

“I am told you are full of remorse, but at the end of the day I regret to say your interests are far subservient to those of your victim - an 81-year-old lady out with her husband of equal years in the autumn of her life going about her law-abiding business,” he added.

She was sitting in the front passenger seat of the car at Sainsbury’s in Loose Road, Maidstone, on the morning of October 15 while her husband, 84, went to get a newspaper.

Rossiter, of Romney Way, Hever Road, Edenbridge, approached her, picked up a bottle and smashed it.

“She opened the driver’s side door and got in, still holding the broken glass bottle,” prosecutor Sophie Evans told Maidstone Crown Court. “She went to steal the handbag in the well of the passenger seat.”

The victim tried to hang onto her bag but Rossiter held out the bottle and threatened to cut her if she did not let go. She called out and her husband returned.

Maidstone Crown Court. Picture: John Wardley
Maidstone Crown Court. Picture: John Wardley

Neil Vickory, who was with his two sons, approached Rossiter and shouted at her but she ran off. Others ran after her and detained her.

Miss Evans said the incident had a profound effect on the victim and her husband.

“Nobody should be subjected to an attack in broad daylight,” said Judge Philip Statman. “She is a vulnerable member of the community.”

Rossiter, who has 22 previous convictions for 69 offences, including burglary and possessing drugs, admitted robbery.

Mary Jacobson, defending, said the mother-of-three was horrified at what she had done.

Jailing Rossiter, who wept while appearing by TV link with Bronzefield Prison, for three years and two months, the judge praised the victim for her bravery and commended Mr Vickory for his “exemplary behaviour”.

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