Edinburgh man who robbed women at knifepoint in Meadows, jailed

A masked thug who robbed two young women at knifepoint on Edinburgh’s Meadows has been jailed for three years.

Cameron Hanlon was sentenced to detention in a young offenders’ institution and made subject to a supervised release order for a further year to “protect the public from serious harm”.

The robberies took place in The Meadows. Picture: TSPL

The robberies took place in The Meadows. Picture: TSPL

The 19-year-old was warned that if he breached the order, which electronically tags him on a home curfew and compels him to undergo drug treatment and testing, he would be returned to custody.

The teen criminal, who pled guilty to two counts of armed robbery, said he couldn’t remember committing the crimes because he’d been high on cannabis and Valium at the time.

He was caught after police matched CCTV footage of him in the area of the Meadows with signals from his mobile phone recorded on local transmission masts.

Livingston Sheriff Court was told that Hanlon, from Edinburgh, was wearing a balaclava to hide his face when he went out on his bike armed with a silver bladed knife.

He accosted Nurhidayah Musri on the morning of 7 October 2018, presented the knife at her and demanded that she hand over her mobile telephone.

The same evening he carried out a copycat attack on Miranda Pierre, robbing her of her mobile phone before cycling off.

Kirsty Lyons, prosecuting, said Hanlon had cycled up to each of the women and repeatedly asked them what time it was before threatening to stab them with the knife and demanding they hand over their phones.

She said he cornered his first victim against a wall before robbing her and chased the second girl for 10 seconds before she surrendered her phone to him.

She said: “The male was described as wearing dark hooded clothing with a balaclava covering his face. Police were contacted and an extensive CCTV trawl of the local area was carried out.

“Officers were also able to conduct a cell site analysis from mobile masts for a telephone associated with the accused which placed him in the locale at the relevant time.”

The accused was traced to his home address on 15 October and both stolen mobile phones were found on a coffee table in his living room.

The clothing he was wearing was matched to other CCTV records relating to an address in Dumbiedykes, she said.

Hanlon’s lawyer told the court: “These were clearly appalling offences and must have caused both young ladies a tremendous amount of distress.

“While no actual violence was inflicted on the victims, clearly the threat of violence has required them to hand over their phones. And the presentation of a knife is a factor in that.”

Passing sentence, Sheriff Peter Hammond told Hanlon: “You pled guilty to two very serious charges of armed robbery at knifepoint with your face masked in the hours of darkness in a public park

“In my view the only appropriate disposals for offences of this seriousness are custodial sentences..

“AT the time of these offences you were on bail and you were also subject to a community payback order.

“For those reasons on each charge I am going to impose on you a sentence of detention backdated to 16 October last year.”

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