A MAN who admitted carrying out a bank robbery has been warned he is facing a lengthy prison sentence.
He left with £2,140, handed to him by a shocked assistant, and left the Front Street premises, heading in the direction of the town’s bus station, at about 2pm on Tuesday, April 22.
But after the circulation of an image of the hooded figure entering the bank, he was arrested in a raid at an address in Gateshead, the following morning.
The 22-year-old, of Edward Terrace, New Kyo, near Stanley, is said to have confessed to police in interview.
Police attending the scene of the robbery shortly after the crime, on April 22
Making his first appearance in the case at Durham Crown Court, via video link from the city's nearby prison, today (Thursday, May 8), he pleaded ‘guilty’ to a charge of robbery.
His barrister, Peter Walsh, told the court: “I have spoken to him in conference and, understandably, he wants to be dealt with, to learn his fate as soon as possible.”
But Mr Walsh asked for preparation of a background report on Heslin by the Probation Service, prior to sentence.
Victoria Lamballe, prosecuting, said: “He admitted the offence in interview with police and indicated he would be making a ‘guilty’ plea when he appeared at the lower court.
“But, there are still some matters to be explored by the Crown.
“It’s an unusual offence in the manner in which it has been committed and there are a number of issues to be looked at.”
Heslin is understood to have gone into a nearby library to look up information on the Internet about robbing a bank, before putting the instructions into action and carrying out the offence.
Adjourning for preparation of the pre-sentence report, Judge Simon Hickey told Heslin: “You have pleaded ‘guilty’ to a very serious offence.
“It’s in your interests to have the report prepared prior to sentence, but no promises are being made as to the outcome.
“The likely sentence will be custody of some length.”
Judge Hickey ordered that Heslin must remain in custody prior to sentence on Tuesday, June 10.