Liverpool

Boy, 15, fights off knife robber with bike seat at Maghull station

Steven Smith Image copyright British Transport Police
Image caption The attempted robbery at Maghull North station was captured on CCTV

A 15-year-old boy fought off a would-be cycle thief who put a knife to his throat by hitting him over the head with his bike seat.

Steven Smith, 24, tried to steal the victim's bike as he was waiting on a deserted platform at Maghull North railway station in Merseyside in March.

Police said "cowardly" Smith, from Liverpool, wrongly assumed the boy would be "an easy target".

Smith who pleaded guilty was jailed at Liverpool Crown Court for four years.

Image copyright British Transport Police
Image caption Steven Smith was jailed at Liverpool Crown Court for four years

CCTV footage showed a balaclava-clad Smith holding a knife to the boy's throat demanding he hand over his bike, British Transport Police (BTP) said.

But when he tried to run off, the "determined" victim chased after him, removing his balaclava and hitting Smith over the head with the detachable bike seat.

Bravery commended

A BTP spokesman said the two exchanged several punches before an "exasperated" Smith shouted: "Just give me the bike... this is me dinner!"

The force said the attacker then pulled a deodorant can and a lighter out of a bag telling him: "That's it, I'm [going] light you on fire."

However, Smith was disturbed by someone and fled empty handed, BTP added.

The victim suffered several injuries including a black eye and a bite on his shoulder in the "very distressing" attack, said police.

Det Con Jonathan Raymond of BTP said: "Smith thought nothing of attacking a boy and using extreme threats to get his way.

"He targeted a boy, who he wrongly assumed would be an easy target... [which] just shows how cowardly he is".

He added he wanted to echo the judge's comments who "commended the victim's bravery".

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