A man who robbed a Shell service station in Kent has been jailed for almost two years.

Rodney Grannum, 48, of Hayle Road, Maidstone snatched cash from the tills of the petrol garage and a Co-op store on April 25.

Grannum first targeted the petrol station on the A229 in Blue Bell Hill. He asked for cigarette papers at the till and placed some change down. When the member of staff opened the till Grannum leaned over the counter and snatched a handful of notes. As he pulled on the till he injured the employee’s hand.

Grannum then went to the Co-op store in Watling Street, Strood. He again placed money on the counter, asking for cigarettes. When the cashier opened the till he grabbed a bundle of £20 notes. As he fled he barged a female member of staff to the floor, causing her to hit her head.

Grannum was arrested at his home within hours of the offences, after a Kent police officer identified him from CCTV footage. During a police interview he admitted responsibility for the robberies, claiming that he had been desperate for cash to pay debts he owed, as a result of using drugs.

Appearing at Maidstone Crown, Grannum was sentenced to 21 months in prison. He had previously pleaded guilty to one count of robbery, and a further two counts of theft and assault.

Detective constable Daniel Barker, who lead the investigation, said: “Grannum wore a hoody over a baseball cap in an effort to try and conceal his appearance, but following his crimes he was quickly identified thanks to the keen eye of a police officer.

“While Grannum may not have intended to cause serious harm to anyone, his actions will have been very distressing for his victims, so I’m pleased that the court in passing sentence has recognised the seriousness of his actions.”