Man jailed for attacking student and stealing £4k watch at waterfront bar

Joshua Ashton was jailed for three years for robbery  Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARY

Joshua Ashton was jailed for three years for robbery Picture: SUFFOLK CONSTABULARY

Suffolk Constabulary

A mugger has been jailed for stealing an irreplaceable watch from the wrist of a University of Suffolk student in Ipswich’s Isaacs on the Quay bar.

Joshua Ashton punched and threatened to stab the man before stealing his Hublot watch – worth at least £4,000 and given as an 18th birthday gift from the victim’s father.

Ashton, 26, of Back Hamlet, was with two men when he approached the student, sitting upstairs at Isaacs on the Quay with a friend, and asked about his watch before leaving to make a phone call and returning with one of the men.

Prosecutor Barnaby Shaw told Ipswich Crown Court that Ashton demanded the wristwatch and punched the victim in his face when he refused to hand it over.

While the second man prevented the victim’s friend from intervening, Ashton landed a second punch before threatening to stab him with the knife he claimed to have in his pocket.

Ashton made off with the watch but was later identified and admitted robbery at the same court on May 14.

Mr Shaw said the victim had been left scared to leave campus and that the robbery had interfered with his studies.

He said the watch was insured, but was a cherished 18th birthday present from his father, and was worth between £4,000 and £8,000.

The court heard Ashton had a record of 12 convictions between the ages of 15 and 22.

At 19, he was locked up for 22 months for robbing two students at knifepoint in Norwich Road.

Ashton was on licenced release from a 32-month jail sentence for theft when the robbery at Isaacs took place on April 1 last year.

Since then, and while on remand, he was said to have matured and realised the consequences of his actions.

Ashton argued the robbery was committed on behalf of the other man involved and that he had gained none of the promised 50/50 share of proceeds from the sale of the watch.

Judge Rupert Overbury described the offence was serious and premeditated, with Ashton prepared to use violence and give the distinct impression he was armed.

But he acknowledged that Ashton had since turned a new page in his life, having been taken in by his partner’s family and found employment following the birth of their child.

“I believe you express sincere remorse,” concluded Judge Overbury as he sentenced Ashton to three years’ custody.

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