A man armed with a hammer who attempted to carry out two robberies in Mildenhall has been jailed.
Thirty-two-year-old Terry Jones tried to snatch bags from a 17-year-old girl and a 62-year-old woman within minutes of each other on December 13 last year.
Ipswich Crown Court heard on Tuesday that Jones had chased the youngest victim and her 14-year-old sister near the Riverside Hotel while he was holding a hammer.
Prosecuting, Michael Crimp said that Jones, of Cutters Close, in Beck Row, threatened the girl and ordered her to hand over her handbag.
The robbery attempt ended when the 14-year-old managed to flag down a passing motorist and get help.
The court heard that Jones then tried to grab a bag being carried by the 62-year-old while she was walking along a street in the town.
Jones had brandished the hammer at her before running off when a member of the public stepped in and shouted at him.
Mr Crimp said that Jones was later arrested and charged with two offences of attempted robbery, being in possession of an offensive weapon in a public place and being in breach of a suspended sentence.
He pleaded guilty to all the charges and was sentenced by Judge Martyn Levett to a total of 63 months’ imprisonment.
Appearing for Jones, Simon Walters said the offences were an attempt to get money to pay off a drug debt after he had been threatened.
He told the court that at the time of the offences his client had been using Class A drugs following the death of his father.