Man in court over shop robbery in west Belfast

Published
Image caption, Sammy Crawford collapsed during the robbery and later died in hospital

A 20-year-old man has been charged over the attempted robbery of a shop in west Belfast on Monday.

Darren Valliday-Smyth, of no fixed abode, has been charged with attempted robbery, assault, and possession of a canister of CS gas.

During the incident, 75-year-old Sammy Crawford collapsed, suffering a suspected heart attack. He died on Wednesday morning.

Police have launched a murder inquiry after his death.

Mr Valliday-Smyth is alleged to have tried to steal a till from the newsagents on Cavendish Street.

The court was told a female shop keeper was sprayed in the face with what is believed to have been mace.

There was no application for bail and Mr Valliday-Smyth is due to reappear before the court via video link on the 11 November.

He was taken to the prison hospital, although there was no explanation why.